Grieving friends gather at the accident site in Bangalow Road on Monday.
Grieving friends gather at the accident site in Bangalow Road on Monday.

Paddle out for Ben

A paddle out will be held at Broken Head tomorrow (Friday) for 20-year-old Ben Donohoe who was killed in an horrific car crash on Sunday morning.

Organised by the Byron Bay Boardriders Club, of which Ben was a member, it will start at 9.30am.

Ben’s funeral will then follow at 1pm at the Byron Bay Rugby League grounds.

Family and friends are still trying to come to terms with Ben’s shock death.

He was a talented surfer and played rugby league for the Byron Bay Red Devils.

Ben died about 3.15am on Sunday when the car he was in, a Volvo station wagon, failed to negotiate a left-hand bend in the road while travelling south along Bangalow Road at Byron Bay adjacent to Ironbark Avenue

Police said the car crossed to the incorrect side of the road, mounted a kerb and slammed into a tree.

Ben, who was in the back seat, was thrown from the car and died at the scene.

The 26-year-old driver and a 24-year-old passenger, also of Byron Bay, were injured and rushed by ambulance to Tweed Heads Hospital.

A group of about 30 family and friends, including Ben’s parents, gathered at the Bangalow Road crash site on Sunday morning to console each other.

Ben was the youngest of four children.

Red Devils’ players and their opponents, Lismore’s Marist Brothers, observed a moment of silence in Ben’ s honour before Sunday’s home game just down the road from the accident site.

A Red Devils jumper was placed at the crash scene, which is also adorned with flowers and candles.

Ben graduated from Byron Bay High School in 2007, celebrating Schoolies in Bali with his mates.

Police said the driver had undergone mandatory blood and urine tests, but at the time of going to press had not interviewed him.

Anyone with information on the crash is urged to contact Byron Bay police on 6685 9499 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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