Ceremonies mark 50th anniversary of Tuskar Rock air disaster

61 people died in the plane crash on March 24th 1968

Ceremonies mark 50th anniversary of Tuskar Rock air disaster

Image: James Brown TD/Twitter

Ceremonies are taking place in Cork and Wexford to mark the 50th Anniversary of the Tuskar Rock air disaster.

All passengers and crew on board the flight from Cork to London lost their lives when the Aer Lingus Viscount plane came down off the Wexford coast.

The majority of the 61 people died in the disaster on March 24th 1968 were from Cork – however there were also victims from Belgium, Britain, Holland, Sweden, Switzerland and the US. 

Mystery

The cause of crash remains unknown to this day.

Former Cork TD Dan Boyle said the anniversary represents 50 years of uncertainty for families of the deceased:

“What we saw in that 50 years was the development of theories that may have been overblown; may have been pointing in the wrong direction,” he said.

“Even at this stage 50 years on, the people involved are looking for definitive answers.”

Long shadow

He said the disaster left “an awful mark” on families and communities in Cork.

“I think the aftermath obviously has not been dealt with very well,” he said.

“The surveys they were undertaking and the continuing uncertainty because maybe the right questions were not asked and certainly the right answers were not being provided.”

Disaster

Only 14 bodies were ever recovered after the crash.

This morning, a wreath laying service was observed at sea close the crash site.

The Le Eithne led a flotilla of vessels carrying relatives and dignitaries.

A land based ceremony got underway at Rosslare Harbour Memorial park at at 2.30pm this afternoon.

You can listen back to a three part series on the disaster from Newstalk reporter Eoin Brennan, whose grandfather died in the crash, below: