A murder investigation has been launched in Boston after an Irish man was assaulted outside an ATM on St Patrick’s Day.
Barry Whelan, 46, originally from Dublin worked as a carpenter with Twin Peaks Construction in the Boston suburb of Foxborough. He had been living in the nearby town of Woburn.
According to Police, Mr Whelan was standing near a TD bank branch ATM on Winter Street on Downtown Crossing where police say he received a blow to the head.
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Police were called to a report of a person unconscious on the ground by passersby. He was found at around 9pm on March 17 lying face up, according to a Police incident report and was rushed to Tufts Medical Centre with an abrasion on the back of his head.
Mr Whelan was placed on life-support but he passed away last Friday.
The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has determined the cause of Whelan’s death was “blunt force trauma, and they have ruled it a homicide.”
The carpenter is survived by his mother Valerie who still lives in Dublin and an older brother Darren who lives in Spain.
Speaking to Boston 25 News John Marsoobian, co-owner of Twin Peaks Construction in Foxborough, he said that his friend worked at his company as a carpenter for the last two years.
“He talked on Friday afternoon about the fact that it was St Patrick’s Day, and he just wanted to go have a Guinness to celebrate,” Mr Marsoobian explained.
“We didn’t hear from him all weekend, and when we arrived at the job site that he was running, he wasn’t there. It was highly unlike Barry to not show up for work.”
Mr Marsoobian said he eventually found out that his co-worker and friend was in critical condition at the hospital, and that his prognosis was not good.
He helped police to locate Mr Whelan’s family in Dublin and Spain.
“He was patient. He was hardworking. He worked six days a week. He paid his taxes and he never complained about anything. He would give you the shirt off his back.
"That’s what Barry was, a gentle soul. We will help (his) brother and their mom for as much as we need to help them through this and even after.”
A Police spokesperson said: “Surveillance video is being reviewed in connection with our investigation into the death of Mr Whelan. No arrests have been made and a motive is still being investigated.”
Mr Whelan’s brother has travelled from Spain to Boston.
Mr Whelan is being waked at William J Gormley Funeral Home in West Roxbury between midday and 2.00 pm on Thursday.
Dozens of sympathy messages were left by his family and friends on his obituary page with his Aunt Marian saying: “Such a young life taken so sadly. Barry (was) a hard worker and loving son . Will be sadly missed. Thinking of Valerie and Darren at this sad time. Love Auntie Marian.”
His cousin Siobhan wrote: “So very sorry to hear of the loss of cousin Barry. Taken far too soon. Thinking of you all during this very difficult time."
Another cousin Nichola added: “Very sad to hear of Barry´s passing. A young life taken too soon. Thinking of Valerie and Darren at this sad and difficult time. May he rest in peace with Uncle Shay. Love your cousin Nichola.”
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