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Thousands to walk for fuel funds for fishermen search

THOUSANDS of people will join the families and friends of two missing fishermen in a 'walk of solidarity' tonight as the operation to recover their bodies continues.

The walk, from Skerries Harbour to Red Island, is hoping to raise fuel funds for about 30 local fishermen and boaters who have been searching for the bodies of Ronan Browne (26), from Skerries, and David Gilsenan (41), from Rush.

The diesel fuel for the search costs fishermen up to €1,000 a day.

Mr Browne and Mr Gilsenan went missing after setting out on Friday morning to go lobster fishing off the Skerries Islands.

They are presumed drowned after their 17ft open boat was found five miles off Clogherhead on Saturday.

The search resumed at first light this morning. It is backed up by a team of naval divers and the garda underwater dive team as well as the Skerries RNLI.

The Navy's LE Emer arrived on the scene yesterday to co-ordinate the massive search.

A specialist Naval Service Dive team and divers on board the naval ship were also involved in the search.

The families of the missing men, including Mr Gilsenan's wife Suzanne and Mr Browne's newly-wed wife Linda, are keeping a vigil at the harbour.

Local residents are deeply saddened by the tragedy and are doing everything they can to help retrieve the men's bodies.

"Everyone is literally rowing in," said Martin Scully, a local businessman and president of the Skerries Chamber of Commerce.

A 'Fund for Fuel' Account has been set up in BoI Skerries. Details are sort code 90 08 93, account number 818 38 744.