Hundreds to attend funerals of Baltimore drowning victims

Search to continue off Beacon Point for young man still missing after tragedy

Hundreds are expected to attend the funerals on Saturday and Sunday of victims of the drowning tragedy near Baltimore in west Cork earlier this week.

Niamh O’Connor (20) will be buried on Saturday at St Catherine’s Cemetery in Kilcully in Cork following requiem Mass at the Church of the Sacred Heart in Glounthaune at 10am.

A second victim of the tragedy, Barry Ryan (51), will be buried at Tullagh Cemetery in Baltimore following requiem Mass at Rath Church in Baltimore at 10am on Sunday.

Both drowned after Ms O'Connor ended up in the sea at Beacon Point outside Baltimore and her boyfriend, Barry Davis Ryan (20) and his father, Mr Ryan went to her aid. All three were swept out to sea and although Baltimore RNLI recovered both Mr Ryan and Ms O'Connor, Mr Davis Ryan remains missing and searches are continuing for him.


A constant stream of mourners made their way to the O’Connor family home at Blossomgrove in Glanmire on Friday evening to pay their respects. Her grieving parents, Paul and Catherine, and her younger sister, Clodagh, were comforted by family and friends as they prepared for the funeral mass in nearby Glounthaune.

The family are well known in the Glanmire area with Ms O'Connor's granduncles, Bertie Óg Murphy and Tadhg Murphy, having played hurling and football for Cork in the 1980s.

A large attendance is also expected in Baltimore where Mr Ryan will lie in repose at Rath Church before requiem Mass on Sunday morning. A native of Foxrock in Dublin, Mr Ryan moved to Baltimore in west Cork some 20 years ago with his partner Ann Davis and their children Arthur, Barry Jnr and Charlotte. Mr Ryan is the son of Penneys founder, Arthur Ryan, and his first wife, Rose. He is also survived by his brothers, Colin and Arthur, and sisters, Alison and Jessica.

Meanwhile the search has continued for Mr Davis Ryan in the Eastern Hole Bay area of the seaward side of Beacon Point some 1.5km from Baltimore village. Divers had thought that they would not be able to dive due to expected adverse weather conditions but the Naval Service managed to carry out a number of dives in strong swells.

However according to Tim O’Keeffe of the Irish Coast Guard, no trace was found of Mr Davis Ryan but the search will continue over the weekend with surface sea searches.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times