Family takes ‘solace’ from organ donation

Kyra McKinley
Kyra McKinley

A 21-year-old woman who died days after a car crash in Co Tyrone, described as “generous” and “good natured, will be laid to rest tomorrow.

Kyra McKinley, from Gillygooley near Omagh, was taken by air ambulance to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast from the scene of a crash on the Deverney Road in Omagh on Saturday.

Sadly, she passed away from her injuries on Monday.

Rev Jane Nelson of Omagh First Presbyterian Church described her yesterday as someone who “had that rare quality that when you met her, you felt better afterwards”.

She said the fact that Kyra’s organs were donated had brought “solace” to her heartbroken family.

“She was airlifted by air ambulance to the Royal, and her family were able to be with her there,” Rev Nelson said. “And when, unfortunately, there was nothing further they could do for her, they (her family) were able to carry out her wishes around organ donation.

“That offer was taken up by the hospital and that has given them a certain amount of comfort. That was what Kyra wanted to do and, with incredible sadness, they (her family) were able to improve someone’s life and bring some solace to their loss.”

She continued: “She was a beautiful singer with a fantastic voice. I have heard her described as a ‘songbird’.

“She was involved in the Omagh Community Youth Choir, which was set up after the Omagh bomb 20 years ago. This year, because it was the 20th anniversary, both the current and past members were invited to take part in the service and Kyra was one of those who was part of that – which is very poignant because it was her last public performance in a sense.

“She was doing something which was very close to her heart, which was supporting good community relations in Omagh. She went to Omagh Integrated Primary School and carried that ethos through into her adult life of reaching out to her neighbour.”

Her funeral will take place tomorrow at 2pm at Omagh First Presbyterian Church, followed by interment in Old Drumragh Churchyard.

Rev Nelson said: “The service is in First Omagh because our church happens to be bigger than Kyra’s home church, which is Gillygooley Presbyterian. She was such a vibrant part of the church community there, and their sympathies go out to the McKinley family.

“They too are mourning her loss, and her home minister Rev Robert Herron is coming back to participate in the service on Friday.”

Miss McKinley is described in a notice as “precious daughter of Raymond and Valerie, treasured sister of Alex and Glenn and deeply loved girlfriend of Matthew Allen”.