Tragedy as father and son drown in Donegal
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Tragedy as father and son drown in Donegal

A FAMILY day out ended in tragedy as a father and son drowned in Lough Keel, Co Donegal.

A family of three-- a man and two teenage boys-- are understood to have been fishing in Lough Keel, between Kilmacrennan and Golan, at around 2.45pm yesterday afternoon when one man fell overboard.

While the details of the tragedy are still under investigation, it is understood another man jumped into the water to try and save the other but both tragically passed away.

The third member of the family, a teenage boy, survived.

Malin Head Coastguard sent out an emergency call for assistance after employees of Irish Water, who were working nearby, heard the men's cries for help.

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Irish Coast Guard

An emergency rescue helicopter and members of the Mulroy Coastguard arrived at the scene, along with Gardaí and members of the ambulance service, and the body of one man was located quickly.

The second man was recovered from the water several hours later, at approximately 6pm.

Both were sadly pronounced dead at the scene, and their bodies taken to Letterkenny University Hospital where they will undergo a post-mortem.

A member of the emergency services who assisted in the rescue told The Irish Times the situation was "heartbreaking".

“To look at the young lad who survived would break your heart," he said.

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"He looked like he was only in his early teens and he was just heartbroken and distraught.

“This was a family who just went out for a day’s fishing and then this happened. It just shows how fickle life can be.”

A full investigation into the circumstances of the two men's deaths has been launched by Gardaí.

May they rest in peace.