herald

Wednesday 22 August 2018

Body of missing teacher (21) found in France, family reveal

Irish teaching assistant Eimear Noonan was reported missing last Friday from the French town of Annonay
Irish teaching assistant Eimear Noonan was reported missing last Friday from the French town of Annonay

The family of Irish woman Eimear Noonan, who had been missing in France since last week, have shared the news that her body has been found.

The 21-year-old had not been seen since last Wednesday, and searches for the missing Clare woman were carried out.

However, in a social media post last night, Eimear's family confirmed her body had been found.

French officials believe she died after a fall while running.

Her family described her as a "warm, bubbly person" who was a talented violinist.

"We, the family of Eimear Noonan, would like to thank all of those who have supported us in recent days," they said.

Eimear's brother Cathal wrote on his Facebook page: "French authorities have now confirmed to us the heartbreaking news that our beloved Eimear died following a fall while running some time on Wednesday.

"Eimear celebrated her 21st birthday in April and had been living in Annonay since September where she worked as an English language teacher.

"Eimear was a warm, bubbly person who had already made a wide circle of friends there through her love of music and singing.

"She graduated last month from UCC with an honours degree in Irish and French, was a talented violinist and to our immense pride was head of the UCC orchestra for her final year there."

The family added that they will be "forever grateful" for the support they had received following Eimear's disappearance.

"Eimear will be greatly missed by all who knew her, especially her parents Flan and Mary, her brothers Declan, Michael and Cathal and all her family and friends," Cathal wrote.

The Noonan family had flown out to Annonay, near Lyon, at the weekend to help with the search.

The local church in Eimear's parish held a special Mass in her honour yesterday.

Solidarity

Fr Joe McMahon, parish priest of Killanena, revealed that the congregation had said prayers for Eimear and her family.

"We just want to pray for the family and be in solidarity with them," he said.

"Getting together helps people to comfort each other a little bit."

Eimear was reported missing by the manager of a guesthouse where she had been living.

He raised the alarm after she failed to report for work, according to reports by the French radio network France Bleu.

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