A HOUSE fire in Letterkenny has tragically claimed the lives of two sisters, in their twenties.
The young women have been named as Anngeline (27) and her sister (Jody) Brogan (28) .
The funerals of the two sisters will take place on Monday in St Columba’s Church, Drumoghill at 12noon. The remains were removed from the Eternal Chapel of Rest, Mountain Top, Letterkenny on Saturday at 3pm and taken to their mother’s home at Lisnennan for waking.
Their parents, Frankie and Mary, and their six siblings were being comforted by family, relatives and friends. The news of the terrible tragedy has shocked the entire community, coming just three days into the New Year.
The family are struggling to come to terms with ther grief. They are well known in the locality. Mr Brogan, was involved in local community work through the Glenboe Action Group and the Doorway Project over the years.
Speaking to the Donegal News, Mayor of Letterkenny, Cllr Paschal Blake, said he was ‘stunned by the news’.
“The town is in grief. However, Letterkenny will rally round the family in the midst of this devastation,” he said.
LocaL Councillors Gerry McMonagle and Ciaran Brogan, who know the family, said they were shocked.
“My thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time,” Cllr Brogan said.
Cllr McMonagle, said he knew the family personally.
“It is devastating. The family are well known and are well respected. Our thoughts are with them at this difficult time,” he said.
A Donegal Fire Brigade spokesman said two rooms had been ablaze, adding: “The fire appears to have happened in the downstairs room and went through the ceiling where the girls were sleeping.”
Three units of the fire brigade arrived at the semi-detached house on the Ceanann View estate within minutes of the alarm being raised around 11am and found both women in the upstairs room.
One of the sisters died at the scene and the second was taken toLetterkenny General Hospital where she was pronounced dead a short time later. Gardai sealed off the area as forensic officers and fire crews carried out a full investigation into the blaze.
Local GP Dr James McDaid was called to the scene after he got an emergency call to his offices. The former Fianna Fail Government Minister said he was shocked by the tragedy.
He added: “It was just a horrific scene. That’s all I can say about it. My thoughts are with the family.”
Gardai and fire service personnel are continuing to investigate the circumstances behind the fire.
One of the young women was pronounced dead at the scene and the other was pronounced dead in the hospital.
Speaking to the Donegal News, Superintendent Michael Finan, said they were treating the fire as a ‘tragic accident’.
“The two sisters were in a bedroom at the front of the house. It was a tragic accident,” he said.
Emergency services were alerted to the fire at around 11 am by a young man who had been in the house but was not seriously injured. He was taken to LGH to be monitored.
A forensic investigation into the cause of the fire has begun.
One eye witness described the shock in the local area as locals learned of the tragic deaths.
“The house doesn’t look too bad from the outside – it is terrible to think two young women died here this morning,” the local said.