Thursday 18 January 2018

Son drowned in US was shining light, says father

Laura Lynott and Grainne Cunningham

THE heartbroken father of a brilliant computer engineer who drowned in a New York yachting accident described his son as a "shining light".

Eoin Curran fell overboard from a sailing boat in Long Island Sound during a sudden squall on Sunday afternoon.

Mr Curran -- who was not wearing a lifejacket -- and an instructor tumbled into the water as the yacht tilted over on its side.

The 30-year-old software engineer, from Templeogue in Dublin, had recently moved to Brooklyn following a promotion by his employer Google. He was on his first sailing lesson aboard the 23-foot yacht from the New York Sailing School in New Rochelle when it capsized less than a mile offshore.

The instructor managed to swim back to the boat and throw a float out in a bid to save Eoin but lost sight of him.

Last night, Eoin's father, John, said: "He really was a special guy and I can barely bring myself to talk about this.

"We are devastated, we miss him so deeply. Eoin was just out having fun, going for a sailing lesson and this happened.

"No one could imagine the pain of getting a call telling us he was missing after a sailing lesson.

"We are keeping in regular touch with the coastguard in New York and everyone who is dealing with this is wonderful."

The search was suspended yesterday and authorities admitted it was no longer a rescue operation.

Mr Curran said it was "important" he spoke about his son -- a former first class BA mathematics student, who also held a Masters in computer science at Trinity College. He wanted his son's "friends around the world to read a tribute to Eoin".

Before emigrating, Eoin had worked on various software projects with his brother Darragh, writing breakthrough software for companies such as Vodafone and outdoor activity company Wilderplaces.


They also established their own online IT company,

Dr Siobhan Clarke, a lecturer in computer science at Trinity, described Eoin as "the most talented student" she had ever taught.

"Eoin was exceptional. He was popular with students and staff and incredibly helpful.

"He used to sit and help other students and, well, he was just fabulous where his studies and work where concerned. He excelled at absolutely everything."

Dr Clarke added that Eoin was a credit to both his family and to Trinity College.

Eoin's roommate, Marcal Garolera (26), described him "as the nicest person I've ever known", and an "amazing" computer programmer.

Irish Independent

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