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Tributes flood in following death of GAA player Aaron Devlin

Sports Minister Caral Ni Chuilin has expressed her shock and sadness at the death of Ballinderry Shamrocks gaelic footballer Aaron Devlin.

The 23-year-old GAA star died today after contracting meningitis last week.

The Minister said: “I was deeply shocked to learn of the passing of Aaron. This is a tragedy which will impact across the whole community and I offer my heartfelt condolences to his family, his friends and his colleagues at Ballinderry Shamrocks.

“It is difficult to believe that just last week he was lining out for his beloved Ballinderry and that now he is gone from our midst. The GAA playing fields will be all the poorer without him.”

A family statement read: “Following a characteristically hard-fought battle with a sudden illness, our son, brother and friend Aaron has left us.”

“Thanks Aaron for the laughs, the tears, the smiles, the strength, the pride… for everything.

“This has been an unimaginably tough and dark time for us – and will continue to be.

“The actions, words, prayers, kindness, and support from so many people has genuinely touched us.

“We may never be able to thank everyone for it, but please know that it has helped us realise just what an impact he made on this world in just 23 years. We have gained so much strength and pride from it.

“We now hope that the many memories Aaron has given us will help us through the challenge that we must now face together.”

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