Tuesday 27 June 2017

Body recovered off Clare coast by Irish Coast Guard team who lost colleague Caitríona

An army of volunteers who live locally make up the bulk of staff at the Irish Coast Guard. Stock picture
An army of volunteers who live locally make up the bulk of staff at the Irish Coast Guard. Stock picture
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

A body has been recovered from the sea off the Clare coast by the Irish Coast Guard.

The body was spotted in the sea off the Clare coast early yesterday morning and the emergency services were notified.

The Doolin unit of the Irish Coast Guard was immediately launched and managed to locate the remains offshore.

They are currently in the process of recovering the remains and bringing the body to shore.

Once ashore, the body will be handed over to the Gardaí and the Health Service Executive (HSE) and then transferred to University Hospital

Limerick (UHL) where a full post mortem examination will take place.

Initial reports indicate that the body was in the water for some considerable period of time.

It is unclear yet whether the body is that of a man or woman.

Gardaí will liaise with the Office of the State Pathologist in a bid to identify the individual involved.

Gardaí are now cross-referencing the discovery with all existing missing person reports.

Caitriona Lucas (41) who died tragically in a rescue mission in Kilkee
Caitriona Lucas (41) who died tragically in a rescue mission in Kilkee

Clare-based Irish Coast Guard volunteer, Caitríona Lucas, died in a freak accident on September 12 last during the search for missing Lissycasey teacher, David McMahon.

Ms Lucas, a mother of two, was killed when the RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) in which she was searching for the missing teacher with two other volunteers was hit by a huge wave and overturned.

While her two colleagues were recovered in a major rescue operation, Ms Lucas had sustained fatal injuries.

She was the first member of the Irish Coast Guard to die during an operational deployment.

Weather conditions at the time off the Clare coast that day were described as very challenging.

Mr McMahon, who got married last Christmas, disappeared on September 9.

His car was later found in the Kilkee area which was the focus of the search for him.

At its height, the search for the teacher involved more than 400 people.

Mr McMahon has been described as "a brilliant young man" and "a role model" for his community.

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