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Dublin: 18°C Tuesday 28 June 2022

Tributes paid to off-duty garda after 'tragic' death off Wexford Coast

Ceann Comhairle Séan Ó Fearghaíl paid tribute to Garda David Hearne.

Tweet by @Graham Ball Source: Graham Ball/Twitter


TRIBUTES HAVE BEEN paid to the off-duty garda who died after getting into difficulty while diving off the Wexford Coast. 

David Hearne, who was a former member of the Garda Water Unit, died after getting into difficulty around midday yesterday.

Ceann Comhairle, Séan Ó Fearghaíl TD, who is Chair of the Bravery Awards Council, described Hearne’s death as “tragic”. 

“In his selfless service to others, Garda Hearne followed in the footsteps of his father, Declan, who was a bravery award recipient in 1958. My thoughts and prayers are with Garda Hearne’s wife, children and wider family at this time,” Ó Fearghaíl said. 

Hearne, who was also involved in his local diving club, had been awarded a certificate of bravery in 2016 for his involvement in a rescue operation in the Colligan river in Waterford. These awards are given to people who have saved a human life in a situation involving personal risk to themselves.

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Around midday yesterday, the Coast Guard was alerted to a report of a diver in difficulty off Hook Head. Hearne was recovered from the water in a critical condition and was airlifted to Waterford University Hospital, but was pronounced dead shortly after.

It was initially reported that Hearne was participating in a search for a missing local fisherman but sources have since said the reports were incorrect. 

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