Thursday 22 February 2018

Girlfriend talks of her worries about Irish man missing in Spain

Gerard Couzens

THE girlfriend of missing Irish man Eoghan Timoney spoke yesterday of her worry over his disappearance as she relived the last time she saw him.

English teacher Eoghan, 36, from Sligo town, disappeared a week ago in Gijon, northern Spain, after telling partner Analia Garcia he was going for a stroll.

He left the flat they shared in the city with just the clothes he was wearing and a wallet with a credit card and around €40 in it. Police say he hasn't used the card or drawn money from his bank account.

Eoghan was last seen at around 1.30pm last Sunday getting off a bus on the outskirts of Gijon near to an area popular with hill-walkers.

Checks by police have shown the missing man used his monthly travel card when he got on the bus near his home just after 1pm.

His girlfriend of 12 years, Analia, who met Eoghan when they were students in Sligo, said yesterday: "I'm sick with worry. I'm on tablets to help relieve my anxiety but they're not working very well. Sleeping is difficult and I'm hardly eating. Eoghan's disappearance is totally out of character. If he was going through some sort of crisis he certainly wasn't showing it to me or my family, quite the opposite.

"He seemed very happy and was looking forward to receiving his first salary from the language school where he recently started working.

"There is a possibility of course that he had an accident while out walking. I'm not ruling out any options but the idea he was a victim of crime is not something I want to think about at the moment."

She added: "The last time I saw him was just before 1pm on Sunday. We'd gone out for dinner on the Friday night and had a great time at a spa in Gijon on the Saturday. We were due to go to my aunt's house for Sunday lunch the day Eoghan went missing. We phoned her from the bus stop to check lunch was still on, and she told me she was going to cancel because it was raining and she had other things to do.

"We'd just got back home five minutes when Eoghan said he was going to go out for a stroll. He loves walking and he told me he was going to be back shortly. He left between 12.50 and 12.55pm. That's the last time I saw him."

Police checks show Eoghan swiped his monthly travel card on a local bus at 1.03pm.

The bus driver has told police that Eoghan got off the bus in an area called Cerillero on the other side of the city to their home in a neighbourhood known as Contrueces.

He insists Eoghan was carrying a rucksack, although his girlfriend is sure he left home without one. The area he was last seen in is close to a cultural centre and cliffs overlooking the sea which are popular with walkers. It is also near to the spot where the Camino de Santiago de Compostela pilgrimage walk passes through.

Police are trying to trace a man Eoghan is believed to have asked directions from when he got off the bus. They are also hoping to pinpoint his movements on that afternoon from his mobile phone.

Analia is in regular contact with Eoghan's family, including parents Ann and Tommy and older brother Mark, who has helped set up a Facebook page called Prayer, Light, Positivity for Eoghan and begun a campaign on Twitter to try to find him.

Mark, and close friends of Liverpool fan Eoghan, who moved to Gijon with his girlfriend two months ago after finishing their studies at NUI Galway, are considering travelling to Spain to help in the search.

Analia, who is visually impaired, said: "It's very important that this person Eoghan was spotted talking to when he got off the bus is found."

Sunday Independent

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