Friday 16 November 2018

Families planning to take bodies of fishing tragedy victims home to Latvia

Sympathy: Hanna O’Leary signs the book of condolence for the men who drowned, in the church in Cahersiveen, Co Kerry. Photo: Gerry Mooney
Sympathy: Hanna O’Leary signs the book of condolence for the men who drowned, in the church in Cahersiveen, Co Kerry. Photo: Gerry Mooney

Ryan Nugent

The families of three Latvian men who died in a fishing tragedy are expected to bring their bodies back to their home country next week.

Anatolijs Teivens (57) and his friends Valerijs Klimentengvs (38) and Jurijs Burcves (30) got into difficulty when fishing off the Coonanna Peninsula in south Co Kerry on Sunday.

Mr Teivens's body was recovered less than 50 metres from the shoreline about 7pm that day, while the bodies of the two other men were found next to the fibreglass boat they had gone out in.

It is understood that the families of two of the men have decided they will be taken back to Latvia to be laid to rest.

The family of the third man have not yet decided but are expected to do the same.

The time it takes to repatriate the bodies will depend on how quickly the paperwork is processed, but it is expected to be within the next week.

Assistance will be provided by the Latvian embassy in Dublin if required.

The embassy passed on its condolences to the families and friends of the three men and said they had been liaising with the Irish authorities since the tragedy.

Residents in Coonanna said the three fishermen were regular visitors to the peninsula, which is a short distance from the town of Cahersiveen.

Yesterday, a bunch of flowers was left at the Coonanna Pier, offering condolences on behalf of the people of Cahersiveen.

Candle

Meanwhile, a book of condolences was also opened in the town's church.

A steady number of locals visited the church throughout yesterday to leave a note in the book of condolences.

Parish priest Fr Larry Kelly said a special Mass for the victims would take place on Saturday night.

He added that a candle would be lit at every Mass and prayer service this week.

"It's a huge tragedy," Fr Kelly said. "The people here are devastated and they feel for the families, it's so difficult for them."

Irish Independent

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