| 14.4°C Dublin

Drowned nuns 
remembered as 'an inspiration'

Two nuns who died after getting into difficulty while swimming on a Kerry beach during a late summer holiday have been remembered as wonderful women who have been an inspiration and blessing to many people.

Sister Imelda Carew (67) and Sister Paula Buckley (70), who were both from Co Tipperary but spent a number of years based in the capital, were regarded as among the leaders of the Presentation order in this country.

They died after getting into difficulty at Inch beach in Kerry.

"It's a huge blow to the Order," a senior figure in Presentation education said yesterday. "Even though they were aged in their 60s and 70s, they would have been seen as young nuns. It's very sad and a big blow."

Sr Imelda was a native of Kilmore, near Dundrum, Co Tipperary and is survived by a wide extended family.

For many years she taught in schools in the South East Province and was very active in the justice ministry throughout Ireland and worldwide.

"For the past number of years she has served in the ministry of leadership in the Congregation and was until her untimely death the leader of the South East Province Ireland," said a spokesperson for the order.


Sr Paula was a native of Camas, near Cashel in Tipperary. She was due to celebrate 50 years of religious life tomorrow, and had plans to mark this event with family, sisters and friends early in September. She is survived by her sister Marie, brother-in-law, nephews and nieces.

For the past couple of years she has been involved in Prison ministry in Dublin.

"For many years Sr Paula was involved in teaching and career guidance in secondary schools throughout the South East," said the spokesperson.

Sr Imelda's funeral will take place tomorrow at 3pm in Mountmellick Parish Church followed by burial at Mountmellick Cemetery.

Sr Paula's funeral will be in Cashel Parish Church at noon on Tuesday next, followed by burial in Ardmayle Cemetery.