‘Sleep soundly among the angels’: Boy, 5, drowns following dingy accident in Irish lake
- Ben Duffy, 5, was playing with his siblings on the shore of Lough Mask in Mayo
- His family were enjoying the Bank Holiday sunshine on Ireland’s west coast
- Ben fell from an dinghy prompting a major search and rescue operation
- The youngster’s body was recovered this morning in four metres of water
The body of a five-year-old boy who fell off an inflatable dinghy into a lake in the West of Ireland has been recovered.
The youngster, named locally as Ben Duffy, from Tourmakeady, County Mayo, fell into Lough Mask at around 6.30pm on Monday.
A massive rescue operation was launched after the boy fell into the lake.
The body of five-year-old Ben Duffy from Tourmakeady, Co Mayo was recovered from Lough Mask this morning after going missing at 6.30pm yesterday.
His body was recovered around 8.30am today following the search, which involved Gardai, the Irish Coast Guard, Civil Defence, Lough Mask Water Rescue and a local diving club.
The local Tourmakeady GAA club, where members of Ben’s family are members, released a heartbreaking statement.
On their Facebook page, the club wrote: ‘Our hearts are broken. Sleep well among the angels who mourn’.
Local parish priest Fr John Kenny said the entire Tourmakeady community was in a state of shock, including Ben’s parents Alan and Treacy.
Fr Kenny told the Mayo News that people had been enjoying the Bank Holiday weekend before tragedy struck: ‘Yesterday evening, it went from a sunny summer’s day with a holiday atmosphere buzz around the place to people screaming for help and devastation for the family.
‘The community is stunned and shocked by what happened and are so upset for the family. The Duffys are involved in everything, the soccer, the Gaelic, the music, the dancing, the fundraising, everything that goes on in the parish. They are a well-loved family, and little Ben was the youngest of five and just five years old.’
Tourmakeady GAA club posted a tribute to Ben Duffy. The club wrote: ‘Our hearts are broken. Sleep soundly among the angels who mourn’
Several families who were along the shoreline immediately began searching for Ben after he fell into the water from the dingy.
A major search and rescue operation was launched and resumed at first light today. Divers recovered the youngster’s body in four metres of water around 200 metres from shore.
Local TD Alan Dillon told the Connaught Telegraph: ‘The tragedy has rocked the local community and a sense of numbness has swept across Tourmakeady.
‘The family are well known in the area and involved in many aspects of community life such as farming and the GAA.
‘My thoughts and prayers are with the family at this most difficult time, the shock and enormous grief this has brought to them and the entire community is palpable.’