Mother ‘disgusted’ at silence over bone discovery at sea

The mother of a drowned fisherman said she was “disgusted and appalled” to discover through the media that bones found at sea in the South-East two years ago.

The remains, which could belong to her son, were found in the waters off Hook Head and Helvick Head in 2010 and 2011.

They may be linked to victims of the Maggie B, which sank off Hook Head in 2006, and the Pere Charles in 2007. The Honeydew II sank off Mine Head the day after the Pere Charles as it tried to assist in a search for the trawler.

Rose Coady, who has lost her son, husband, and father-in-law to the sea, said she was “sickened” that neither gardaí nor a state agency contacted her about the bones.

Her son Patrick, 25, from Duncormick, Co Wexford, was one of five lost when the Pere Charles sank.

Mrs Coady said she felt “cheated” because she did not know if her son could be buried at the family plot in Rathangan, Co Kildare.

In Jan 2010, a femur bone from a left leg was found by a fisherman near Hook Head, while nine months later a skull was recovered off Helvick Head.

In Aug 2011, a right femur from a different person was found off Hook head.

Former Det Gda Gerry Kealy yesterday said he had written to high-ranking gardaí last year seeking €12,000 to pay for DNA analysis. Budgetary constraints appear to have ruled out any testing.

The families of the fishermen were never told of the discovery of the bones.

Mrs Coady, who now lives in Cornwall, was home on a two-week holiday when she learned about the discovery. She said last night: “To think that they’ve had the bones in Dublin now for two years and nobody did anything about contacting us. It’s just appalling; I am disgusted.

“I came home to spend some time with my family and to see it on the news was just unbelievable.

“If they thought they found the remains, we have a right as a family, to lay them to rest. It’s absolutely wrong the families have to go through this.

“The Government should have found the money and no questions asked. They should get the DNA tested and the remains should be laid to rest.

“I just can’t understand this. Three generations of my family have been lost at sea. They could have done a lot more to contact me.”

Her husband Stephen drowned in Jan 2006 while fishing off Cornwall and her father-in-law Paddy Coady, drowned off Kilmore Quay, Co Wexford, in 1985.

The Pere Charles tragedy also claimed the lives of Tom Hennessey, his uncle Pat Hennessy, Billy O’Connor, and Andrea Dyrin.

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