Man dies of suspected heart attack while swimming near Kinsale

Member of Irish Aviation Authority board became ill while swimming near Kinsale

Geoffrey O’Byrne-White who died while swimming in the sea in Co Cork.

Geoffrey O’Byrne-White who died while swimming in the sea in Co Cork.


A 62-year-old man has died after suffering a suspected heart attack while swimming in the sea near Kinsale in Co Cork.

The man, who has been named locally as Geoffrey O’Byrne-White, a member of the Irish Aviation Authority board, took ill while swimming at Sandycove outside Kinsale at around 6pm.

Mr O’Byrne-White was spotted slumped in the water by a passer-by and a number of other swimmers and a paddle boarder came to his assistance.

Locals used a debrilliator to try and resuscitate Mr O’Byrne White while paramedics also attended. Mr O’Byrne-White moved to Kinsale from Malta ten days ago with his family.

Dr Michael Sheehan, a doctor in CUH’s emergency department who lives in the area, and Dr Hugh Doran of East Cork Rapid Response, were among the medics who treated Mr O’Byrne-White at the scene.

A decision was taken to medivac Mr O’Byrne-White due to the inaccessibility of the area and the Irish Coast Guard Emergency Control Centre in Valentia tasked helicopter Rescue 117 to go the scene.

Mr O’Byrne White was airlifted by Rescue 117 to Cork University Hospital with Dr Doran and Dr Sheehan continuing to perform CPR on him as he was transported to the Bishopstown hospital.

However, attempts to resuscitate Mr O’Byrne White proved unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead shortly after arrival at Cork University Hospital.

A postmortem will take place later.