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Gardai seek help to find little Mary 41 years on


Mary Boyle, photographed a week before she disappeared

Mary Boyle, photographed a week before she disappeared

Mary Boyle, photographed a week before she disappeared

Gardai have renewed their appeal for information about missing schoolgirl Mary Boyle on the anniversary of her disappearance 41 years ago.

The six-year-old went missing without trace on March 18, 1977, from Cashelard, Ballyshannon, Co Donegal.

Despite an exhaustive investigation, her disappearance is one of the State's longest-running missing persons cases.

Gardai said yesterday that their investigation remains "live and ongoing at this time".

They asked for anyone that might help advance the investigation and bring some comfort to the Boyle family to come forward.


An extensive search operation and investigation was launched when Mary went missing, but no trace of her has ever been found.

Last year, to mark the 40th anniversary of her disappearance, gardai released images of clothing similar to that worn by Mary on the day she went missing.

She was wearing a lilac cardigan and black Wellingtons.

Her twin sister, Ann, wore identical clothes that day, and those images were shown on RTE Prime Time.

Mary disappeared after lunchtime, and when she was reported missing by her distraught parents, gardai, family and scores of neighbours scoured the area.

That search escalated over the following weeks to include bog holes, lakes, streams and the countryside beyond.

There was further heartbreak for the family when Mary's father, Charlie, died in a fishing accident in July 2005.

Her mother, Ann, previously described Mary as "a special little girl".

In a statement yesterday, gardai said they remained "committed to this important investigation".

Ballyshannon Garda Station can be contacted on 071 9858530 or call the Garda Confidential Line (01800 666 111).