Monday 24 October 2016

Fund set up to help family with three sets of twins who lost dad

Chris Doyle and his wife Michelle with five of their seven children back in 2012
Chris Doyle and his wife Michelle with five of their seven children back in 2012

Money is being raised to help a grieving mum and her seven children - including three sets of twins - after the youngsters' dad died suddenly.

Chris Doyle (37) passed away unexpectedly at his home on June 10 - weeks before he was to renew his wedding vows.

He and his wife, Michelle, made headlines in 2012 when they welcomed their third set of twins. The couple beat odds of 500,000-1 to have three sets of twins in one family.

The Doyle Family Support Fund has been set up by people in Portlaoise, where the family live, to help Michelle purchase a nine-seater car for her family.

A letter has been distributed locally describing Chris and Michelle's family life, and saying Chris was "a proud and devoted father".

"Chris did as every loving dad does: he kissed sore knees, sat up with them when they were sick, played and laughed, helped his children navigate life's difficulties," the letter reads.

"He was an ever-present hands-on support: grocery shopping, school runs, helping with the bedtime routine.

"When his eldest sons were diagnosed as having special needs, acute learning difficulties and multiple disabilities, Chris gave up work to become a full-time carer," the letter continues.

His devotion as a dad earned him the title of Ireland's Dad of the Year in 2013.


"The news of Chris' passing sent a ripple of shock and sadness through our close- knit community," the group said.

"There is nothing we can do that will replace all that this family has lost, but there is so much we can do to make their lives a little easier."

Chris, originally from Dublin, is also missed by two children from a previous relationship, Alana Maxwell-Doyle (17) and Dylan Maxwell-Doyle (9).

A fund-raising concert will take place in Portlaoise pub, Kavanagh's, on July 15. Tickets cost €5 and can be picked up locally in schools and the parish hall.

Donations can be made in any Bank of Ireland branch or online using the IBAN number IE17BOFI90188882269627.

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