THE family of Blathnaid Timothy are hoping a picture of a scarf similar to the one she was wearing on the night she vanished will help them solve the mystery of her disappearance.
More than three weeks after the business consultant was last seen, her family and the gardai have taken the unusual step of releasing the picture.
Blathnaid's brother Ronan Timothy said last night that they are hoping it will help them find out what happened to the 33-year-old.
"You have to be pragmatic, we'd like to hope that there's some sort of a miracle out there but as time goes on the chances are less and less so really what we are trying to do is get some closure on this whole affair."
The Galway native hasn't been seen since a taxi driver dropped her off at Harbour Road in Howth, north county Dublin, on the night of Tuesday December 14. Earlier that evening CCTV footage captured her withdrawing e60 from an ATM on Sir John Rogerson's Quay in Dublin city centre and getting in to the taxi.
Mr Timothy believes someone in Howth must have seen his sister. "There were people around that night. While we appreciate that it's quite a while ago at this stage we are hoping that the scarf might jog someone's memory of having seen Blathnaid in the vicinity."
The 'Dogtooth' scarf was purchased from high street retailer Warehouse and was slightly frayed from wear and tear.
"In terms of what she was wearing it's probably the most distinctive piece of clothing that she had on, it's something that would stand out in someone's memory as opposed to the coat," Mr Timothy said.
"We are hopeful some more information might come out, up to this point there's been a surge of goodwill and we have had breakthroughs like finding the taxi man who dropped her off. Now we are hoping that someone will come forward with another piece of the jigsaw," he added.
Gardai are appealing for anyone who was in the Howth Village/Harbour Road/Howth Pier area from 8.30pm on the night in question and may have seen Blathnaid or any lone female out walking to contact them.
That evening was a busy one for the time of year -- the emergency services were dealing with an incident on the West Pier and the Howth Yacht Club AGM was underway. Gardai are hoping that these details might jog people's memories.
Mr Timothy said any information will help. "Not knowing is just so hard, you are not moving forward, you are just stuck in the one position and that's why if anybody out there can remember seeing Blathnaid, please come forward."