July 19, 2024

BREAKING: After 20 long days and marathon rescue operation, body of missing fisherman is finally recovered

After 20 torturous days for the family of missing fisherman Willie Whelan, they now have some closure after his body was finally recovered from sea off the coast of Waterford.

After a near 48-hour recovery mission of the sunken trawler, The Alize, Mr Whelan’s body was finally brought back to the surface by members of the Naval Diving section this morning.

His body was discovered by divers from the Hook Sub Aqua club on Wednesday morning during a dive at the spot where the Alize went down near Hook Head.

A joint operation was immediately arranged involving the Navy, Irish Coast Guard and Garda divers at that site in an effort to recover the body.

Up to 15 naval divers alongside an automated submersible vessel from the ILV Granuaile, a multifunctional vessel which can operate in difficult sea conditions, have been diving at the site in an effort to repatriate the body, and this morning they successfully did so.

Mr Whelan (41), from Saltmills, county Wexford had been missing since his boat sank off Hook Head around 10.45pm on Saturday, January 4.

A second fisherman Joe Sinnott (65) from Kilmore, who was also on the boat when it sank, died at University Hospital Waterford (UHW) on Sunday, January 5 after being rescued from the sea.

Mr Whelan and Mr Sinnott’s boat sank as they were returning to Duncannon harbour after being out fishing for scallops.



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