Northern Ireland

Newtownabbey: Seven-year-old Jackson Turner dies after three-vehicle crash

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Media captionThe crash happened on the Old Carrick Road in Newtownabbey on Saturday evening

A seven-year-old boy has died after a crash in Newtownabbey, County Antrim.

Police said Jackson Turner, a primary four pupil at Sunnylands Primary School in Carrickfergus, County Antrim, died at Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital.

Seven other people were injured when three vehicles collided on the Old Carrick Road at about 18:35 GMT on Saturday.

Jackson's grandmother and four-year-old sister were among those hurt in the crash.

Injuries to the five people in the two other cars involved in the collision are not thought to be life-threatening.

Councillor May Beattie, a chair of the board of governors at Sunnylands Primary, said the accident had affected the entire community of Woodburn, County Antrim, where Jackson's family live.

"It's a very close-knit community," she said.

Memories

"Everyone feels for the family, everyone will rally round and do their best."

Ms Beattie said there was a strong bond between Jackson and his sister Ally.

"Every morning, Jackson held his sister's hand going into school. From the first week on, he accompanied her in by hand.

"That's a memory that even the headmaster and teachers will never forget."

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Image caption Seven people were injured in the crash, including Jackson's grandmother and sister

Gareth Hamilton, the principal of Sunnylands Primary School, said he had fond memories of Jackson.

"If there was something going on, he wanted to be part of it," he said.

"He was very much full of life and a real character within the school.

Bond

"A few weeks ago we had a visit from Nick Sharratt, a well-known author and illustrator, and Jackson was the one who was picked from the crowd to have his picture drawn.

"He just had the biggest, beaming smile when that happened."

Mr Hamilton added that Jackson was a caring child.

"There aren't many seven-year-olds who want to be with their little sister in school but that wasn't Jackson.

"When they met each other at the end of the day, they ran to each other.

"There was such a strong bond between the two of them."

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