A “talented” teenage Gaelic sportsman was soaked from the waist down and not wearing shoes when he was hit by a train in north London, an inquest has been told.
Student Connor Marron, 19, from Ahoghill in Co Antrim, went to the PDC World Darts Championship at Alexandra Palace on January 2 2022 before he was hit by an empty stock train at 48mph just north of Hornsey Station.
Mr Marron had been drinking in the capital before and during the quarter-final event with his friend Oisin Connolly, North London Coroner’s Court was told on Thursday.
While leaving the venue, Mr Marron discovered his phone was lost and left Mr Connolly to find it. He was reported missing hours later. It was his first time visiting London and he had no money on him at the time of the incident, a witness statement from Mr Connolly said.
British Transport Police (BTP) said Mr Marron was found in the early hours of the morning without shoes on and “soaked from the waist down”, with no indication of how he came to enter the track, the inquest heard.
Senior coroner Andrew Walker said: “He was crossing from one side to the other. It was clear he wasn’t able to cross in time and was struck as he was crossing.”
Mr Walker said there may have been an “inconsistency in the fencing” around the track, allowing Mr Marron to cross. Members of Mr Marron’s family, who were attending the inquest remotely, said they believe he went through water and “hit a brick wall” when coming across the track.
They said: “If you look at the area, there’s nowhere to go. He went up through the water and up to the track, maybe to get away from something.”
PC Roger Andrews, of BTP, said enquiries are continuing into where exactly Mr Marron entered the track.
Mr Walker read out a tribute from Mr Marron’s family, which said he was “passionate about sports” and played for his local Gaelic football team, as well as competing nationally at snooker. He had attended a grammar school and was a second-year Human Resources student at Ulster University.
Friends described Mr Marron as “happy, outgoing with a wonderful sense of humour”. His girlfriend said he was “not like other boys” and “loved to go out and do things”.
Mr Marron was also described as ”a beautiful, talented and kind person with a bright future ahead of him”. Mr Walker adjourned the inquest conclusion until June 7.