The family of a missing student have said they are relieved to have him home after a body was pulled from the sea.
Michael Bugler, 20, originally from Ennis, Co Clare, was last seen on December 18 as he made his way home from a night out in Galway city centre.
A RNLI crew took a man’s body from the water off Ardfry Point near Oranmore on Galway Bay at about 12.30pm.
In an online post, Mr Bugler’s sister Laura added some photographs of the pair in their childhood and expressed thanks to those who helped in the searches.
“On behalf of myself, my family and Michael’s friends I’d like to thank you all for your help and support over the past 3 weeks,” she said.
“Thankfully we are so relieved to finally have Michael home today x.”
The Garda press office confirmed a man’s body had been taken from the sea but a formal identification had yet to be made.
A post mortem examination is expected to take place in University Hospital Galway.
Mr Bugler, a student in NUIG, was last seen leaving the Quays area of the city with CCTV recording him passing the Claddagh Church at 00.58am, with investigators presuming he was making his way home to Fairhill Road.
Hundreds of volunteers joined searches for the missing man during the Christmas break, while the Coast Guard helicopter crew scoured coastlines around Oranmore on Wednesday before the discovery was made.
The search has been called off.
Mr Bugler’s sister Laura posted heartfelt messages of thanks online during the searches and last week spoke of how she never thought she would be entering 2016 without her brother.