Friday 9 December 2016

Taoiseach expresses his condolences to Karen Buckley's family: 'This is anybody’s worst nightmare... it's unspeakably sad

Karen was "cherished by our family and loved by her friends" say parents

Adam Cullen in Glasgow, and Caroline Crawford

Published 17/04/2015 | 02:30

Karen Buckley, 24, from Mourneabbey, south of Mallow in Cork, and her friends arrived at Sanctuary nightclub in Dumbarton Road, Glasgow, at around 11.45pm on Saturday 11/04/2015
Karen Buckley, 24, from Mourneabbey, south of Mallow in Cork, and her friends arrived at Sanctuary nightclub in Dumbarton Road, Glasgow, at around 11.45pm on Saturday 11/04/2015
Classmates of Karen Buckley gather together on the campus of Glasgow Caledonian University yesterday. Photo: Mark Condren
Karen Buckley
Karen's parents John and Marian Buckley. Photo: Mark Condren
Police dive at the Forth and Clyde Canal in Glasgow yesterday. Photo: Mark Condren

Enda Kenny has expressed his condolences to the family of Karen Buckley, describing her death as "unspeakably sad".

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"Well it is a tragedy. This is anybody’s worst nightmare and obviously so many people in Ireland and worldwide can empathise and sympathise with the Buckley’s," he said.

Classmates of Karen Buckley gather together on the campus of Glasgow Caledonian University yesterday. Photo: Mark Condren
Classmates of Karen Buckley gather together on the campus of Glasgow Caledonian University yesterday. Photo: Mark Condren
Karen Buckley (24) with her brothers Brendan (32), Damian (27) and Kieran (28).
Scottish police officers searching for student Karen Buckley in Glasgow. Photo: Getty

Mr Kenny said the tragic death of the young student was "a horrific situation for any family with the life of a young person extinguished like this".

"Obviously I don’t want to make any other comment until the authorities in Glasgow and East Scotland do their work. But fro the Buckley’s for the family for the brothers of Karen this is just a tragedy. It’s unspeakably sad," he added.

The grief-stricken family of Karen Buckley spoke of their heartbreak as it was confirmed that remains found on Scottish farmland were those of the missing student.

A 21-year-old man is due in court today in connection with her death, almost a week after she vanished during a night out with friends.

Karen (24) was originally from Co Cork, but had been living and studying in Glasgow since January.

She was last seen on CCTV outside the Sanctuary nightclub in the early hours of Sunday morning. After four days of intense searches, police uncovered human remains.

Karen's father John said that he, his wife Marian and sons Brendan, Kieran and Damian were "absolutely heartbroken".

"Karen was our only daughter, cherished by our family and loved by her friends.

"She was an outgoing girl, who travelled the world where she met lots of people and thoroughly enjoyed her life.

"We will miss her terribly."

The remains were found near High Craigton Farm outside the village of Milngavie, about 10km north-west of the city.

Police had moved in on the site in large numbers on Wednesday night, and yesterday morning they announced the grim find.

Detective Superintendent Jim Kerr said: "I can now confirm that the body discovered by officers at the farm in north Glasgow last night is that of Karen Buckley.

"Her family have been made aware. We cannot imagine the pain and suffering of Karen's family and friends and all our thoughts are with them at this very sad and distressing time.

"We would like to take this opportunity to thank the public and the communities both here and in Ireland for their significant assistance during this investigation. It was very, very helpful."

A post-mortem was being carried out last night to establish the cause of death.

There were emotional scenes as Karen's classmates gathered on the steps of Glasgow Caledonian University where she studied occupational therapy. The devastation on their faces was clearly visible as they hugged through the tears.

One friend told the Irish Independent that they were "completely devastated" and "felt raw".

GCU Principal and Vice-Chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies said "the community is deeply saddened ... It is so tragic to lose someone so young and talented in such difficult circumstances".

Concerned

Karen was reported missing by concerned friends on Sunday afternoon. A large-scale search operation was launched on Tuesday following the discovery of Karen's handbag in a bin.

However, search efforts later moved to the farm outside Glasgow.

It is understood a key piece of information given to police by a civilian played a vital role in the discovery of the remains.

Searches continued yesterday as divers combed the Forth and Clyde canal.

A local was detained by police on Wednesday night, and arrested in relation to her death yesterday.

He is expected to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court today.

The Sanctuary nightclub offered its condolences and remained closed last night as a mark of respect.

It also sent its sympathies with an online message that read: "Our thoughts and prayers are with Karen and her family."

Irish Independent

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