Thursday 18 October 2018

'Mum wouldn't walk out on us' - Family of Galway woman missing 32 years make heartbreaking plea

Barbara Walsh was last seen in her home back in June, 1985
Barbara Walsh was last seen in her home back in June, 1985 Newsdesk Newsdesk

The family of a Galway mother who disappeared 32 years ago have made a heartbreaking plea for anyone with information to come forward.

Mother-of-seven Barbara Walsh was last seen by one of her daughters lying on a couch in the family home in Rusheenamanagh on June 22, 1985.

At the time of her disappearance, one of Barbara's children was just nine months old.

Speaking on RTÉ's Prime Time, Jacqui Walsh told of the last time she saw her mother.

"I woke up, and I just went down to the kitchen. Mum was asleep on the couch. So I tried to wake her up to see if she would go back to bed. And she didn’t, so I just put a pillow under her head and a blanket on her. When I got up in the morning she was gone."

Initially it was thought that Barbara would return home, or would be found safe somewhere. A number of months passed before any publicity was given to the case.

After Barbara’s disappearance her husband MacDara continued to raise their children in the home. MacDara Walsh died in 2007.

Jacqui Walsh was joined by her sister Catherine, who also appealed for people to come forward with information.

“Mum wouldn’t walk out on us, on seven kids, there’s no way. She was a proud woman, she was a good mother. And I’m sure someone does know what happened. It’s not too late for somebody to say something. It’s never too late,” Catherine said.

A complete re-investigation of the case is currently being undertaken by gardaí who have taken 70 witness statements as part of the review of the case. A five day excavation of lands around Barbara’s house in 2015 failed to find any trace of the missing 34 year old.

“I believe there are people still alive with direct knowledge of what happened to our mother,” Jacqui said.

Anyone with information on Barbara’s case should contact the Garda Confidential line on 1800 666 111.

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