Tributes to Emily after tragedy at beach days before 8th birthday

September 11th, 2023 10:00 PM

By Southern Star Team

Several emergency services were involved in the search operation on Tuesday. (Photo: Andy Gibson)

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TRIBUTES have been paid to seven-year-old Emily Roman from Crosshaven who tragically drowned at Fountainstown Beach on Tuesday afternoon.

The second class pupil of Templebreedy National School  and a twin to brother Jeremy, was swept out to sea while swimming with her friends. 

The alarm was raised shortly after 4.30pm and emergency services including Rescue 115 helicopter and  RNLI Crosshaven Lifeboat Station, participated in the search for Emily.

Her body was recovered by a member of the public along with an individual from the lifeboat crew of Crosshaven RNLI after they spotted her body near the shore at approximately 7.30pm.

Staff at her school said they are in shock and utterly devastated at Emily’s death. Emily died just two days before her eighth birthday. School principal and her class teacher Doris Bryan said Emily had a beautiful smile.

‘She was greatly loved by everyone and was very popular with all her friends. On behalf of the school I extend our deepest sympathies to Emily’s parents, Marta and Slawomir, her older sister Inga and her twin brother Jeremy.’

Bishop Paul Colton, patron of the school, said they are all devastated. ‘A tragedy like this is having a traumatic effect on this small parish school at the start of this new school year and also the wider community. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.’

Local Fianna Fáil Councillor Audrey Buckley said the community there is devastated following the death of Emily. ‘I can’t imagine the heartbreak her family are experiencing and it’s such an awful tragedy. My heart goes out to her parents and siblings. 

‘People here are deflated but are hoping to hold a silent vigil in the village in honour of her and they want to reach out to the family.’

Cllr Buckley has also asked Cork County Council to extend lifeguard duty for all beaches for the next week or so as the country experiences fine weather in September.

A GoFundMe page ‘Help Us Give Our Beloved Angel a Proper Farewell’ has also been set up to help the family. Within 24 hours donations had already topped €16,000.

Cork Fianna Fáil Cllr Seamus McGrath said that the news of the passing of the child was ‘truly devastating’.

 ‘My thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the little angel. The lower harbour community has experienced unimaginable tragedy and loss in a short number of weeks. We all wish we would wake up from the nightmare.’

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