Bad weather halts Baltimore search for missing drowning victim

Appeal for rescue divers to join west Cork search for Barry Davis Ryan

The search for a young man missing in a tragedy in west Cork which claimed the lives of his father and girlfriend was yesterday confined to the shoreline because of deteriorating weather conditions.

Barry Davis Ryan (20) has been missing since June 30th, when he was swept out to sea trying to rescue his girlfriend, Niamh O'Connor (20), who fell or was swept in by a freak wave.

The couple were walking on the shore near Beacon Point in Baltimore with Mr Davis Ryan's father, Barry Ryan (51), and his younger sister, Charlotte (13), when the tragedy happened.

Both Ms O'Connor and Mr Ryan Snr were recovered shortly afterwards by Baltimore RNLI but died soon afterwards. They were buried following separate funerals in Co Cork at the weekend.


The search for Mr Davis Ryan was restricted by bad weather at Beacon Point to shoreline searches by Irish Coast Guard members.


According to David McMyler of the Irish Coast Guard, force seven to eight southwesterly winds caused six-metre swells near the shoreline, making it too dangerous for divers or boats to join in the search.

According to Mr McMyler, the forecast is that the bad weather will continue through today and it is likely to be tomorrow afternoon at the earliest before diving can resume.

Experienced divers


John Kearney

of the West Cork Underwater Search and Rescue team has appealed for experienced divers to contact them with a view to assisting in the search later in the week.

“We’re appealing to any experienced search and rescue divers to join us if they are free Thursday and Friday – the weather should have settled by then and it should be safe to go back in the water. We’re hoping to saturate the area with divers, because it’s difficult terrain there near the Beacon.” Mr Kearney said divers could contact either the local Irish Coast Guard units in West Cork or the Irish Coast Guard at Valentia.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times