herald

Saturday 16 December 2017

Hundreds gather to support heartbroken parents of tragic Chloe

Chloe was the only child of Paul and Louise Fogarty, who married in October 2015
Chloe was the only child of Paul and Louise Fogarty, who married in October 2015

There were tearful scenes last night as hundreds of mourners gathered outside the Tipperary town home of Paul and Louise Fogarty, whose only child died last week from suspected heat stroke.

Seven-month-old Chloe was found unresponsive in a parked car in Dundrum, Tipperary on Thursday, the hottest day of the year.

Despite being taken to University Hospital Limerick (UHL) by air-ambulance, doctors were unable to save her life.

A post-mortem was conducted on Saturday by State Pathologist Dr Marie Cassidy.

This involved detailed clinical tests, the results of which will not be available for some time. However, sources said preliminary results indicated Chloe's death was consistent with heat stroke.

Horrified

It is believed her father inadvertently left her in his car for between four and five hours after he parked it near his place of work.

The horrified O'Dwyer Steel worker discovered Chloe, who should have been left at a local creche at 8.30am, shortly after 1pm.

Mr Fogarty is understood to have been distracted by a phone call and forgot his daughter was in the car when he parked it.

Chloe's mother had only recently returned to work from maternity leave and the creche arrangements had been in place for just a few days.

Mr and Mrs Fogarty are well known in the west Tipperary area. Both families are hugely respected and have strong connections to the worlds of GAA, horse-racing, community development and healthcare.

Mourners gathered at the couple's home, where Chloe rested in repose from 5pm to 7pm. Her Mass of the Angels will be held today at 11.30am at the Church of St Nicholas in Solohead.

Locals said the community was doing everything possible to support the devastated parents.

"Everyone is heartbroken," said a neighbour. "The whole community is shocked by what has happened."

Kilfeacle parish priest Fr Pat Coffey said the community was devastated by the tragedy.

"It is just a case of being shell-shocked," he said. "Everybody is feeling for them."

Both families have appealed for privacy as they struggle to come to terms with what one neighbour described as "a total nightmare".

Chloe was born to Paul and Louise - who married in 2015 - in October.

Louise Fogarty, nee McInerney, is from Tipperary town, while her husband is from Golden-Kilfeacle.

They live in a rented property in Tipperary town and plan to build their dream home in Kilfeacle.

Mr Fogarty is a keen GAA player and plays with Golden-Kilfeacle.

Terrible

Tributes at today's Mass of the Angels are expected from local GAA and community groups and O'Dwyer Steel.

Gardai are treating the incident as "a terrible tragedy".

They said their inquiries will be handled in a sensitive manner given the circumstances.

A file will be prepared for the coroner's office.

The inquest into Chloe's death will not be heard before next year. It is unclear whether that inquest will be in Tipperary or Limerick.

Children and the elderly are particularly vulnerable to heat stroke.

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