A FRIEND of the woman killed when the caravan she was staying in blew off a cliff during Storm Ali has revealed she was a Swiss tourist visiting Ireland to improve her English.
56-year-old Elvira Ferrari, from Switzerland, was one of two people killed during the storm, which saw Ireland hit with winds of up to 100mph.
Ferrari was sleeping in a caravan near Clifden in County Galway when tragedy struck, with emergency services arriving soon after but to no avail. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
Now a friend of Ferrari’s has spoken to the Irish Mirror to express their shock and sadness at their tragic loss.
Rolf Weber, who resides in Switzerland, told the Mirror: "I saw her two days before she left for Ireland in August. She was excited about her trip.”
An avid hiker and mother-of-three, Ferrari had separated from her husband 14 years ago and was a health worker back in her homeland.
She had been in Ireland to study English for five weeks.
"She didn’t travel out of Switzerland too much but did a lot of travel within,” Weber told the Irish Mirror.
"She booked to go to Ireland to improve her English," he added.
"She said she wanted it so she could travel to more places."
Weber had been in touch with Ferrari last Sunday, September 16, when she revealed she was visiting Clifden for a three-day holiday after finishing her English studies.
Ferrari is survived by her three grown-up children, a daughter, and two sons.
Storm Ali also claimed the life of a man in his 20s who was killed by a falling tree, hours after Ferrari’s death.
Engineer Matt Campbell was working for Northern Ireland Water in Slieve Gullion Forest Park in Newry, Northern Ireland when he was crushed to death by a falling tree.