Aaron Macauley will be remembered as one of Drumadonnell Primary School’s ‘precious gems’, according to the principal.
The 10-year-old died following an accident on the family farm last Tuesday afternoon.
He fell off machinery at a property in an area known as Slieve Croob, between Dromara and Rathfriland.
His older brother Matthew, who’s believed to be in his late teens, was also injured in the accident.
Keith Spiers, principal of the school, said that everyone at Drumadonnell was ‘deeply shocked and saddened’ by Aaron’s tragic passing.
“He was a lovely child and very caring towards other children in school,” Keith recalled.
“Each time I met him he greeted me with a friendly word or a bright smile. He had a vibrant personality and a fine sense of humour.
“Aaron was involved in all aspects of school life and he was well known and loved by staff and pupils alike. His presence in school will be sorely missed. He was also involved in organisations outside school.”
Mr Spiers said that the thoughts and prayers of everyone at the school were with Aaron’s immediate family.
He added, “The Macaulay family has been associated with Drumadonnell Primary School since its opening in 2000 and Aaron’s four siblings are past pupils.
“As the gravity of the situation sinks in there will be difficult days ahead and measures will be in place to support children and staff as they return to school.
“Every child in this school is special and we grieve, deeply, the loss of one of our precious gems.”
Other tributes from across the community include one of the area’s football teams.
In a statement on their Facebook page Moneyslane Football Club said they would like to express their sincerest condolences and sympathy to the entire Macauley family.
“The Moneyslane family although a rural area have a deep bond and Aaron’s tragic passing will hurt deeply especially with his friends in Drumadonnell PS.
“Please continue to remember Maurice, Wendy, Jack, Helen, Hazel and Matthew in your prayers and that our Lord and Saviour will draw near in the days and weeks ahead.”