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Saturday 25 February 2017

Fisherman dies in waters that claimed brother

Eimear Ni Bhraonain

A FATHER-of-three drowned near his home yesterday -- five years after he searched the same waters for his brother's body following a fishing trip.

Michael O'Connor (59) was found -- wearing a life jacket -- near his family home in Cullenstown, Co Wexford, after his wife became frantic when he failed to return from fishing.

Yesterday, the man's widow, Joan O'Connor, wept as she described how her loving husband had driven to Dublin with their son the day before his death to help "settle him" in college.

Joan described her husband as a "fond dad" to Shane (19), Michael (16) and Grace (13). The family moved to Co Wexford because it was Michael's "dream" to come home after living in England for 25 years.

Joan said she had urged her husband not to go fishing on Monday night, but he replied, "No hon, you know I'll be OK".

"He always said that because he only fished down (in the estuary) at the bottom of the garden," Joan said.

Joan expected her husband to return at the usual time of 5am -- when the tide would change -- but he failed to show.

She added: "The coastguard came at 11 o'clock and they found him. He wasn't far from here."

Michael's brother, Ronnie O'Connor (44), died in a similar fishing accident on August 31, 2005.

Irish Independent

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