Updated: 20/06/17 : 10:03:05Printable Version
A well-known and respected member of staff at Sligo University Hospital (62) was airlifted by Rescue 118 to the hospital yesterday evening after a kayaking incident off Aughris Pier in west Sligo has died.The man passed away earlier this morning in hospital.Named locally as Paddy McCarrick, a father of two from Garavouge Villas in Sligo Town, he was part of a group of kayakers went out yesterday evening from Aughris Pier.
He was in a two-person five-metre kayak. A keen watersports fan but only took up kayaking in recent years.
Mr McCarrick's friends told rescuers his kayak capsized and he was unable to right it.
He managed to free himself from the device, but couldn't climb back on.
Other kayakers closed in and told him to hang on to the bow or stern of one of their kayaks.
As they made their way back to shore, with Mr McCarrick hanging on, witnesses said he seemed to "take a turn" as if he was suffering cardiac arrest.Rocks
The Malin Head Coastguard confirmed this morning that they received the call shortly after 8pm.The Rescue helicopter, Coastguard, RNLI and ambulance responded promptly.
When the air ambulance arrived at the scene, the casualty had been lifted on to rocks and had CPR administered.
Mr McCarrick helped to build a provisions cottage on Church Island on Lough Gill as a memorial to people who drowned in the area some 30 years ago.
A friend, who did not wish to be named, said: "He took up kayaking on Lough Gill and became immersed in it.
"He used to kayak on the lake but he hadn’t much experience kayaking off-shore out at sea."
Owner of the Beach Bar at Aughris Darren McDermott told Midwest News the entire area is shocked and saddened by the news.
Local Independent Councillor Michael Clarke said that everyone in the area is distraught after
hearing this sad news.
A report has been prepared for the Sligo coroner.
Mr McCarrick's funeral Mass will take place at St Anne's Church, Sligo, on Friday.