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Tributes to teenager killed in workplace accident

TEENAGER Neil Graham who died in a tragic workplace accident last week touched the hearts of so many people during his life, according to his grieving mother Joy.
Speaking just hours before Neil’s funeral she described her son as thoughtful and hard working.
“He was a very unassuming character, but could be the life and soul of the party,” she said.
Seventeen-year-old Neil, from Garrison was a trainee mechanic. He was working on farm machinery near Springfield when the tragic accident happened.
His mother, Joy, went on, “He had a great way about him. He was very thoughtful and very good to his brother and sisters. Around home he was the DIY man. Yes, Neil was the boy.”
She said she was still in shock. “It’s still so surreal she said.”
Joy admitted that the family was so touched by the support and sympathy shown by people in Derrygonnelly and along the route home to Garrison on Thursday.
“The shops closed in Derrygonnelly as we passed through to bring Neil home and there were neighbours standing outside their homes and at crossroads along the way.
“The amount of people in the community that have sympathised with us is phenomenal and it means so much to us,” she added.
Neville Elliott, a cousin and neighbour described Neil as a ‘lovely lad’.
“If anyone wanted their son to aspire to be someone, it would be like him.”
“I’ve known him since birth. He was a cheeky kind of lad, a hard worker who loved machinery and farming.
“He was always helpful in all walks of life,” said Neville.
Rev Ngozi Njoku who conducted the funeral service on Friday afternoon told the large congregation that Neil was ‘a good man both inside and out.’
“He was a very good boy. He was one of the few that lived up to his confirmation duties.
“He became a member and regularly attended this church. He took his place in the body of Christ and kept coming even after Confirmation. He was the one that stood out in the Christian community.”
Kevin Beattie, vice-principal of Belleek Controlled Primary School, said: “Neil always came to school with a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye, but he was happiest when on the sports field or working hard in the school garden. We remember, with fondness, his great sense of humour and his willingness to help others.”
A message posed on the Enniskillen Royal Grammar School’s app said, “Our thoughts and prayers are with Neil’s family and friends.
“Our entire school community is deeply saddened by the sudden loss of Neil.”
The Orange Institutions annual memorial parade due to take place on Sunday was postponed as a mark of respect.
Neil is survived by his father Eddie, mother Joy brother Jonathan and sisters and Rebecca.

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