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02nd Mar 2020

New Rathcoole playground Carla’s Kingdom to be dedicated to Carla McGinley

Melissa Carton

A wonderful tribute.

It has only been a month since the tragic deaths of Carla, Conor and Darragh McGinley and for many the pain is still raw.

As a parent my heart goes out to their family. I listened to their father give their eulogy in floods of tears unable to even start to comprehend what he must be going through.

Nothing will ever fully heal the heartbreak the McGinley family and their community are going through and the children will never be forgotten.

The pre-school that Carla McGinley attended, The Happy Feet Early Learning Centre has plans to develop a new playground in memory of Carla and I think it’s a beautiful and very fitting tribute.

The owner of Happy Feet, Kelly O’Hickey, said that she was inspired by Andrew McGinley’s eulogy and that all parts of the playground will reflect Carla and her brothers, as well as another former student Clodagh Magliozzi who passed away due to illness.

Speaking to The Echo Ms O’Hickey said;

“The playground will be a space that represents each of the children, for the children in Happy Feet. It’s something concrete and tangible.

They were children and they loved to play. I know that they would have loved each of their areas, because they’re going to represent who they were.

I think it’s going to be an opportunity for people to integrate their memories of the children and to give them space to heal.”

Carla’s Castle will be a Frozen-themed section, Darragh’s Den will feature paintings of Marvel characters and Conor’s Cave will be Lego-themed. There will also be a special fairy garden called Clodagh’s Cottage in memory of four-year-old Clodagh Magliozzi.

A coffee morning in aid of Carla’s Kingdom is due to be held in Rathcoole Community Centre on Thursday, March 5, from 9.30am to 11am, for anyone who would like to contribute to the new playground.

Those who can not attend can contact happyfeetelc@gmail.com to offer a contribution.