Tuesday 19 September 2017

Girl (15) who drowned in Crete had just done her Junior Cert

Laura Dempsey (15), a secondary-school pupil from Greystones, Co Wicklow, died
in a hotel pool on the Greek island of Crete. Stock photo: GETTY
Laura Dempsey (15), a secondary-school pupil from Greystones, Co Wicklow, died in a hotel pool on the Greek island of Crete. Stock photo: GETTY

Alan O'Keeffe

A schoolgirl who drowned in a swimming pool in Crete had been celebrating the end of her Junior Certificate exams.

Flags flew at half-mast at Greystones Sailing Club yesterday in tribute to Laura Dempsey, who was an active member of the junior sailing groups at the club.

The popular 15-year-old from Greystones, Co Wicklow, was found unconscious in a hotel swimming pool on the Greek island on Sunday afternoon.

Frantic efforts were made to resuscitate her but she was later pronounced dead.

Laura had just completed her Junior Certificate examinations and was enjoying a holiday in the Stalida resort with her parents John Dempsey and Nicola Smith.

She was a pupil of Temple Carrig Church of Ireland Secondary School in Greystones.

The patron of the school, Archbishop of Dublin Dr Michael Jackson, offered his sympathy to Laura's family.

Heartache

"It was with deep sadness that I heard of the death of Laura Dempsey at the weekend," he said in a statement issued yesterday. "To her family, we extend our sincere sympathies and pray that they know God's strength in their heartache and devastating loss.

"We hold Laura's friends and the whole school community in our thoughts and hearts as they struggle to come to terms with their loss. We also pray for the principal, teachers, chaplain and staff of the school as they support the students in their grief."

A Greek police officer said that an investigation into the tragedy was ongoing. A report on Laura's death was being compiled for the authorities by a forensic doctor.

Greystones Sailing Club's commodore Daragh Cafferky paid tribute to the "enthusiastic sailor". She was also a member of Bray hockey club.

A spokesman for the Department of Foreign Affairs confirmed that officials based at the Irish embassy in Athens were involved in providing consular assistance to the grieving family.

Irish Independent

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