TRIBUTES from throughout sport and politics have been flowing in for Nevin Spence, his father Noel and brother Graham following their deaths on Saturday.
Nevin, 22, passed away along with his father and brother in a farming accident on the Drumlough Road in Hillsborough.
Rory McIlroy, the world’s number one golfer and a keen Ulster fan, tweeted: “Just heard the tragic news of Nevin Spence and his family. Makes you cherish every day you have on this Earth.”
Former boxer Barry McGuigan said: “Tragic news about Nevin Spence and his family, in County Down Northern Ireland. My deepest heart felt sympathy to his family.”
First Minister Peter Robinson said on Twitter: “Deeply saddened to hear of the tragedy in Hillsborough this evening. My thoughts and prayers are with family at this time of devastation.”
His Ulster team-mate, fly-half Ian Humphreys, wrote: “Devastated to hear the news about Nevin Spence and his brother and dad. Prayers with all his family... RIP Nev, you’ll never be forgotten...”
Irish rugby legend Brian O’Driscoll tweeted: “Devastating news about Nevin Spence, his dad & brother. What a wonderful talent he was. Thoughts & prayers go out to his family & friends.”
The official IRFU Twitter feed read: “Nevin Spence - Rest In Peace. On behalf of the Irish Rugby community we pray for the Spence family.”
The sentiment was shared by the Scottish rugby team, who wrote: “Thinking of all @Ulsterrugby today after the tragic death of their young centre Nevin Spence and his father and brother in farming accident.”
Former Welsh international Shane Williams said, “My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Nevin Spence. A tragic loss. A class act on the field also. RIP,” while Nevin’s Ulster team-mate wrote “Devastated to hear the news about Nevin Spence and his brother and dad. Prayers with all his family... RIP Nev, you’ll never be forgotten...”