Council tributes to Michaela

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A MINUTE’S silence was observed at Cookstown Council on Tuesday night for Michaela McAreavey after tributes to the murdered newly-wed led by Council Chairman John McNamee.

“The local community are shocked and stunned by what has happened,” said Councillor McNamee who extended his heartfelt sympathies to the Harte and McAreavey family.

“She was a celebrity in her own right representing Ulster in the Rose of Tralee,” he said.

Sinn Fein Councillor Oliver Molloy also extended his heartfelt sympathies to both families, adding that the Harte family had close connections with Pomeroy. “Our thoughts are with the families at this time,” he said.

DUP Councillor Sam McCartney said he would not wish such tragedy on any family. “My thoughts go out to them at this time.”

Councillor Sean Clarke of Sinn Fein said he knew the family through GAA circles. “I know Micky and the Harte family for many years. They are a lovely family. It is an awful tragedy and I would like to extend my condolences.”

Ulster Unionist Councillor Trevor Wilson said: “It is an absolute tragedy I wouldn’t wish on anyone.”

SDLP Councillor James McGarvey also added his condolences adding that he saw Micky Harte on TV asking for breathing space and he hoped the press would give it to them. “It could be weeks before it is sorted out.”

Sinn Fein’s Pearse McAleer, in extending his condolences to both families and her husband John, said: “It must have been a terrible shock for him.”