Body of missing Limerick student recovered from Shannon
By David Raleigh
The body of a student missing since March 6 has been recovered from the River Shannon.
The remains of Steven Kavanagh were discovered shortly after midday near the ESB power station, Ardnacrusha, in Co Clare.
ESB staff at the facility noticed the body floating in the water and alerted the emergency services.
The student's body was recovered by a boat from Mallow Search and Rescue Service that was already in the area conducting a search for Mr Kavanagh.
The 21-year old from Clonlara was Vice President of Limerick Institute of Technology Student Union and was last seen near his home at around 2.30am on Thursday, March 6.
A major air, land and water search involving Mr Kavanagh's family, joined by Limerick Marine Search and Rescue, Mallow Search and Rescue, Killaloe/Ballina Search and Rescue, the Shannon based Coast Guard helicopter and hundreds of volunteers, took place everyday for the past 19 days.
Around 200 volunteers had combed land and water around the greater Clonlara area at the weekend but found no sign of Mr Kavanagh.
One of those who helped in the search said: "At least the family have some ease now but it will never be easy for them now."
The body has been taken to University Hospital Limerick where a post mortem will take place.
It's understood Mr Kavanagh's remains were pushed to the surface after underwater turbines at the ESB power station were being cleaned with a specialised machine.
"Thankfully Steven's body has been recovered. He was found at around 12:30 this afternoon at the ESB power station at Ardnacrusha," said Sergeant Michaela Moloney, Henry Street garda station.
Sgt Moloney also praised all those involved in the multiagency search for Mr Kavanagh: "Over the past 19 days we've had the Navy (divers), Abbeyfeale Search and Rescue, Corbett Search and Rescue, Killaloe and Limerick search and rescue groups."
"LIT students, where Steven was Vice President of the students union, have been a huge support to us. The University of Limerick Kayaking Club also went out in their kayaks and patrolled the more smaller waterways. The support was phenomenal," Sgt Moloney added.