Wednesday 20 March 2019

Call for council to honour Ciaran Smith

Ciaran Smith in his Wild Geese GAA playing days.
Ciaran Smith in his Wild Geese GAA playing days.

The courage of Oldtown man, Ciaran Smith who was lost at sea off the Mayo Coast along with the crew of Coastguard Helicopter, Rescue 116 should be formally recognised by the local authority.

That is according to Cllr Adrain Henchy (FF) who called for a formal recognition by the council of the Castguard winchman's extraordinary life.

Cllr Henchy proposed the motion 'in recognition and in memory of'' winchman Smith, and in remembrance of Mr Smith's colleagues, Captain Dara Fitzpatrick, pilot Mark Duffy and winch operator Paul Ormsby, who also lost their lives during the rescue operation.

Cllr Henchy said: 'The purpose of the motion is in recognising Ciaran - who was a proud Fingallian and originally from Swords - and his immense contribution.

'He made his life in Oldtown, in North County Dublin, with his wife Martina and three young children, and very much remembering his parents, and brother and sister as well, who of course remain devastated not only in terms of losing a son, a husband and a brother, but also the daily tragedy of his remains never been recovered.'

He said: 'The hope here is, with the motion - and I very much recognise the sensitivities around the matter - that at some stage, maybe in collaboration with the Irish Coast Guard, the local authority, and absolutely with the family, for Fingal County Council to recognise Ciaran's remarkable bravery in terms of giving his life to save others, as he truly did on the night.'

Cllr Cathal Boland (NP), supporting the motion, said: 'I very much welcome this motion, and I think it's long overdue. The contribution that these men and women make to the community is phenomenal.

'For them to lose their lives in providing a service, to the benefit of all of us, is something which is really to be admired. For people who have such courage, and commitment to their fellow man, to put their own lives at risk, is something that is to be applauded.'

He said: 'Certainly in this instance, the council should take the opportunity to create something memorable, in Ciaran's case, and I think that the Executive should look at the possibility of finding some mechanism of putting a lasting tribute to Ciaran and his colleagues, and effectively to the service which they have provided.''

Following the passing of the motion, the council said it would contact the family, regarding the proposal.

Fingal Independent