Karen Buckley’s family: ‘We are absolutely heartbroken’

“Karen was our only daughter, cherished by our family and loved by her friends. She was an outgoing girl, who travelled the world where she met lots of people and thoroughly enjoyed her life. We will miss her terribly.”

Karen Buckley’s family: ‘We are absolutely heartbroken’

The words of “absolutely heartbroken” John Buckley were yesterday read out by Detective Superintendent Jim Kerr, the officer leading the inquiry into the disappearance of Karen Buckley that has now become an investigation into her death.

Karen Buckley's parents

Det Supt Kerr yesterday confirmed the remains discovered at a farm on the north of Glasgow on Wednesday were those of the 24-year-old masters student.

“We cannot begin to imagine the pain and suffering of Karen’s family and friends and all our thoughts are with them at this very sad time,” the Major Investigations Team officer said.

“We would like publicly to thank everyone for their support to the investigation. This case has attracted a significant amount of public interest here in Scotland and in Ireland, and the response and support from the community in Glasgow and beyond has been very, very helpful. We are extremely grateful to everyone including the news media, for their immense support throughout,” he said.

Searches continued yesterday of High Craigton Farm and the area around Dorchester Avenue, where the nurse, from Mourneabbey, near Mallow in Co Cork, was last reportedly seen. Police divers were yesterday seen recovering a large curved knife from the canal that runs between the Dorchester Avenue apartment of Alexander Pacteau and the entrance to Dawsholm Park, where Ms Buckley’s bag was found on Tuesday afternoon.

The 21-year-old has been arrested in connection with Ms Buckley’s death and a report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal, the Scottich public prosecutor. He is expected to appear in court in Glasgow today.

Sources within the police said it may be some time before Ms Buckley’s remains will be repatriated, depending on how the case into her death develops.

A public vigil organised through social media in Ms Buckley’s memory is to be held today in George Square in the heart of Glasgow.

READ MORE: Moving messages as social media pays tribute to Karen Buckley

A crowdfunding campaign organised by former University of Limerick classmates of Ms Buckley’s has raised over £50,000, 10 times the target established by the fund two days ago. The fundraising effort was undertaken to cover the cost of the family’s stay in Glasgow and to help with the running of their farm in Cork. The deadline after which the campaign closed passed at 9.30pm last night.

“A huge thank you to everyone for your kind words and amazing donations. The response has been overwhelming,” a message on the gofundme site read.

Concerns for Ms Buckley’s safety were raised last Sunday evening after she had left her friends in a nightclub in the early hours of the previous morning. She was seen on CCTV outside the Santuary nightclub speaking to a man now known to be Alexander Pacteau. He was subsequently traced by police after which he told them that he drove Ms Buckley back to his apartment where she spent a number of hours before leaving at approximately 4am Sunday morning.

The search for Ms Buckley originally focused on the Kelvindale area of North Glasgow, before attention shifted on Wednesday afternoon to the rural Milngavie region approximately 15km north of the city centre.

Speaking in the Dáil yesterday, Tánaiste Joan Burton expressed sympathy on behalf of the Government to Ms Buckley’s family and friends.

“It’s every parent’s nightmare what has unfolded in the past few days,” Ms Bruton said. Her sentiments were echoed by opposition TDs .

Mallow TD and minister of state at the Department of Foreign Affairs Sean Sherlock also expressed his sadness at Ms Buckley’s death. “This is deeply upsetting news for the Buckley family and the entire community in Mourneabbey and North Cork.

“The local community has already rallied to the aid of the family and I know that it will rally again in this time of grief. My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Karen in Mallow, Cork, Glasgow, and throughout the world,” he said.

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