I was following the story of a major search underway for the crew of a Wexford fishing vessel that sank off the south-east coast yesterday. The Pierre Charles, which was based in Dunmore East, sank in heavy seas three miles from Hook Head at around 6pm. The vessel had five men on board, four from Kerry and Wexford and one from eastern Europe. Two lifeboats and two coastguard helicopters were sent to the area after a distress signal was picked up yesterday evening, but they found no trace of the missing crew.
It sounds very ominous for those fisherman and I just wanted to step away from the political issues for a moment and reflect on the courage of those who go to sea for their living. I could not possibly do it, and yet day in day out, many brave folk head off into stormy seas in search of their daily bread. I have nothing but admiration for them and am so sorry for their families when they face terrible waits like that facing those whose relatives were on board this vessel.
"O Christ! Whose voice the waters heard
And hushed their raging at Thy word
Who walked’st on the foaming deep
And calm amidst its rage didst sleep.
Oh hear us when we cry to thee
For those in peril on the sea."