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12.51 18 Dec 2017


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The mother of Clodagh Hawe says everything seemed 'normal' the last time she saw her daughter and her family.

The inquests are underway into the deaths of Clodagh Hawe and her three sons, who were found dead at their homes outside Ballyjamesduff in Co Cavan in August 2016.

They were killed by their father Alan who then took his own life.

Readers may find some of the following details distressing

The Coroner Dr Mary Flanagan started proceedings by saying this was a particularly emotive inquest.

First to give evidence was Clodagh Hawe’s mother, Mary Coll, who said Clodagh, her husband Alan and their three sons called to her house on the night before they were all found dead.

Mary Coll said everything was normal - they had tea and biscuits and were chatty.

13-year-old Liam had won a basketball match and was delighted, and Mary Coll thanked Alan for bringing over the goodies for their tea.

She also wished him the best as both he and Clodagh were returning to work as teachers the following day.

The inquest heard Clodagh was due to drop her two youngest sons over to her mother's house the following morning at 8.30am.

When they did not show up, Ms Coll rang and texted her and Alan to see if everything was OK.

When she didn’t hear back she called over the house at around 10.40am - and was about to enter when she saw a note pinned to the back door saying: 'Please don’t come in. Please call the gardaí.'

Mary Coll said she knew it was Alan's handwriting - she called into the next door neighbour and said 'I think Alan has done something terrible and killed them all.'

The inquest heard gardaí later arrived and found five bodies inside.

A hatchet and two knives were found inside the home.

A sealed three paged letter and a loose A4 page - written by Alan Hawe - were on the kitchen table.


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