There has been an outpouring of sympathy today after news broke that a young mother tragically lost her life while on a family holiday in Fermanagh in the early hours of this morning.
The Donegal woman in her thirties, who was holidaying with her husband and two children, fell overboard from a boat near Devenish Island at approximately 1.20am today. A full search was launched for the lady, and a body was recovered from the Erne shortly before 2am.
Frantic efforts by the emergency services were made to resuscitate the woman, with CPR being carried out, however she was sadly pronounced dead on arrival at the South West Acute Hospital shortly before 3am.
It is understood the mother was checking the boat’s mooring, ensuring it was tied up properly before going to bed, when she slipped and fell. Her husband desperately tried to save his wife.
Reacting to the news, former First Minister Arlene Foster said the woman’s death was “heartbreaking” offered her prayers to her family.
Heartbreaking to hear the news that a woman died in Lough Erne this morning. Thoughts and prayers with all her family at this tragic time
— Arlene Foster (@DUPleader) April 13, 2017
Sinn Fein MLA Jemma Dolan also expressed her condolences, and said the tragedy had shocked the local community.
“I’d like to commend the efforts of the emergency crews who came to the scene to provide assistance,” she said.
“My thoughts are with the family and friends of this young woman from Donegal at this difficult time.”
Sad to hear of the death of a woman in Lough Erne, apparently fell from a boatAdvertisement
— Tom Elliott (@telliott_UUP) April 13, 2017
UUP MLA Rosemary Barton said this morning’s news had been “deeply distressing.”
“My heart goes out to the family and friends of this young woman, who was taking a pleasure trip on Lough Erne over the Easter weekend,” said Ms Barton. “What should have been a happy family time has turned to tragedy.”
The Fermanagh South Tyrone MLA also took the opportunity to remind people to stay safe on the water: “As we approach holiday season, I feel that it is important to stress to all users of the Lough that safety should always be at the forefront of our minds.
“While it is a wonderful and scenic spot, today’s incident has highlighted that it can also be very dangerous.”
Local Cllr Keith Elliott praised the emergency services for their efforts.
“This is a devastating incident for the family and all connected with Lough Erne,” said Cllr Elliott. “I want to praise the RLNI and the emergency services for their brave actions at the scene. This pain of this tragic death will be felt right around the county and my thoughts and prayers go to the young woman’s family at this time.”