Colleagues feel ‘disbelief’ at hen do death of nursing assistant Ruth Maguire

A woman who died after attending a hen do in Carlingford was hard-working nurse whose death has been met with “disbelief” by colleagues.

Wednesday, 20th March 2019, 11:06 am
Updated Wednesday, 20th March 2019, 11:07 am
Ruth Maguire

Her employers have today paid tribute to health worker Ruth Maguire, whose body was discovered off the coast of the Co Louth border town, which is a popular destination for hen and stag parties.

A spokeswoman for the South Eastern Health Trust confirmed she had worked as a “specialist community public health nurse assistant” for the trust.

The trust said in a statement: “It is with disbelief and much sadness that the School Nursing Service and the Children’s Health Directorate within South Eastern Trust have learned of the sudden death of their esteemed colleague, Ruth Maguire.

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“Ruth had worked within the school nursing team in the Down area since 5th February 2018.

“During this time, she established great friendships both locally and across the service and she was a much loved and valued colleague. Her loss will be felt across the service for some considerable time.

“The South Eastern Trust, colleagues and friends wish to extend their deepest sympathy to Ruth’s partner, her children and the wider circle of family and friends.”

As well as listing this job, Ruth’s Facebook profile also lists her as being a council employee.

The council said: “Ruth Maguire joined Newry, Mourne and Down District Council as a casual leisure attendant at the Newcastle Centre in May 2018.

“Ruth was pleasant-natured, intuitive and hardworking who was popular with colleagues and customers alike. She was an asset to the team in the Newcastle Centre, and will be sadly missed by everyone who knew her.

“Our sympathy goes to Ruth’s family and friends at this difficult time.”

She was reported missing on Sunday, having apparently gone missing the day before.

Seana McMullan wrote on Facebook at 11.30pm that day: “It’s now been a full 24hrs from Ruth Maguire has been seen.

“She was separated from our hen party last night in Carlingford and we assumed that she would return by morning after a few of the girls searched for her. She was wearing the clothes below and without a coat, her phone has not been active since 12pm last night.”

Kilkeel coastguard said today that after it and other agencies began searching for her at 7.45am on Monday, “the casualty was located on a small island in the middle of Carlingford Lough by Newcastle all-weather lifeboat subsequently being returned to Greenore to the family members, Gardaí and Coastguard by Kilkeel Inshore lifeboat.”