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Caitríona Lucas, tragically killed in coast guard rescue, remembered as an exceptional person

The mother-of-two died on Monday.

Updated 6.21pm

THE IRISH COAST Guard volunteer who died during a rescue operation off the coast of Clare will be laid to rest today.

Caitríona Lucas was remembered as a inspirational mother and dedicated worker.

She was remembered by her husband Bernard, 20-year-old son Ben and daughter Emma, 18, at St. Brigid Church in Liscannor this morning.

Bernard and Caitríona were childhood sweethearts. Today, he read a poem for her which began:

Caitriona, the call was made
and you set out in wind and wave and rain,
your quest to search and search to ease a family’s pain.

And then his final words:

Your sacrifice will never be lost on us your loyal crew,
anchors away you beauty queen,
you’re in our hearts,
from your friends and lonesome crew, it’s slán go foill.

Ben described his mother as an exceptional person in every way in a short address, reports RTÉ.

“She loved the sea and the coastguard… her work in the library, especially the projects with the children. My mother had lots of great qualities. She was caring, honest, kind and, above all, dedicated.”

Her friend Pat Flynn told Ray D’arcy this afternoon that he also described her as his hero.

Flags are flying at half mast across the country for the first ever Irish Coast Guard volunteer to die during a rescue.

Lucas and two other crew members were thrown from their boat when it capsized during a search operation for a missing person.

Jenny Carway, another rescuer who was injured in the incident but survived, yesterday placed a wreath on the cliffs at Kilkee where her colleague died.

President Michael D Higgins has also written to express his condolences to the woman’s family with Taoiseach Enda Kenny also passing on similar sentiments.

With reporting by Sinéad O’Carroll

Read: ‘Caitríona was up there with the best of them’: Shock at sadness at death of Coast Guard volunteer >

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