Family of missing Irishman still searching to bring home remains

ireland
Family Of Missing Irishman Still Searching To Bring Home Remains Family Of Missing Irishman Still Searching To Bring Home Remains
Cian McLaughlin was hiking in the Grand Teton national park on June 8th when we went missing.
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Vivienne Clarke

The family of a 27-year-old Dublin man who went missing in Wyoming last June is continuing the search in a bid to return his remains to Ireland.

Cian McLaughlin was hiking in the Grand Teton national park on June 8th when we went missing.

His mother Grainne McLaughlin told RTÉ that her son had been living in the area for the past two years and that he had dual Irish/US citizenship.

“Cian was an outgoing guy who loved the outdoors”, she said, adding that he worked as a snowboard instructor during the winter and as a bar man during the summers. Her son would always stop and chat to people and was loved by all his friends. “He was living his life”.

Ms McLauglin said that Cian was “well versed in the mountains” having grown up going on walks with her and other family members. He knew the importance of gear and equipment.

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The family believes he was on a day hike and went off trail. At the time snow was melting so it would have been a “tricky time of year”.

The family arrived in the area on June 17th and within two days were told that it was a recovery operation. “I went through a huge amount of grief at that time. That was really hard”, she said.

“This is not a rescue, it is a recovery, but I'd like to bring him home. I know he is up there somewhere. I am thinking of Cian at every moment and trying to connect with him and my hope is to bring him home, to have some resolution and bring him home”, added Ms McLaughlin.

The family has launched a major social media campaign using the hashtag #FindCian.

His uncle, Colm O'Higgins told RTÉ that they are appealing to the public for information. Given how sociable and chatty Cian was, the family is certain he would have talked to someone that day who might remember him on the trail.

“Our appeal is to anybody who was in the park around June 8th and who may have taken photos. We are asking them to have a look at their pictures and see if there is somebody in the background. They can share them with us at bringcianhome@gmail.com or the park rangers”, he said.

Grand Teton National Park Chief Ranger Erika Jostad said that the search for Cian would not end until he was found. At the time he went missing 70 searchers were involved along with search dogs and aircraft and infrared imaging to narrow down the area to search.

“The search won’t end until we find him”.

“Tactics shift over time. We are coming towards winter and we expect the snow to fall. That will make some of the clues we are looking for a little more difficult to find”, she added.

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