Belfast Telegraph

Kenny pays tribute to flood victims

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has led tributes to the young garda and a woman who lost their lives during the flash floods that wreaked havoc across the east of Ireland.

The body of Garda Ciaran Jones, 25, was pulled from the River Liffey in Co Wicklow, close to where he was swept into the water while trying to help motorists in danger during Monday night's deluge.

Around the same time, the body of a woman - believed to be a Filipina in her 30s - was discovered after emergency services pumped water out of a flooded basement flat in Crumlin, south Dublin.

"I would like to tender my sympathies to the families of those who unfortunately have lost their lives," said Mr Kenny.

Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore described the deaths as "two great tragedies that cast a cloud over the day".

Neighbours evacuated from Parnell Road in Crumlin late on Monday night alerted emergency services to a bottom floor apartment where it was believed the Filipina woman had been living.

Divers from the Garda Water Unit were unable to find anything during an initial search in the early hours of the morning but the woman's remains were later recovered when the basement was drained. The woman has yet to be formally identified.

Rescue workers recovered Garda Jones's body from the River Liffey at Ballyward Bridge in Manor Kilbride, Co Wicklow, shortly after 9am on Tuesday.

The officer, who was stationed at Stepaside, south Dublin, and lived at Manor Kilbride, had been helping people on the upper stretches of the river at Ballysmuttan Bridge with his brother and a friend when he was pulled into the fast flowing waters at 7pm on Monday evening. He was off duty at the time.

Superintendent Eamon Keogh, of Blessington Garda Station, said Garda Jones - a member of the force for about four years - died trying to help others. He said: "He was seen for a few moments by friends and then he wasn't seen again."

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