Authorities have recovered a body from the waters near Carlingford, and which police believe is that of 30-year-old Ruth Maguire, who went missing after a hen party on March 16.
Multiple agencies had dispatched helicopters and lifeboat crews in order to look for the mother-of-three who went missing when she was out with around 30 of her friends at Taaffe's Bar in County Louth, Ireland in order to celebrate an upcoming wedding.
However, when her friends left the bar they realized that she wasn't with them anymore.
Maguire, who is a native of Belfast and who currently lives in Newcastle, County Down, Northern Ireland, with her family, had rented out a property for the weekend with her friends which was just five minutes walk away from the bar.
The Daily Mail reported that the bar is situated on the shore of the Carlingford Lough, a large bay that opens out into the Irish Sea.
It is believed that Maguire said at some point on the night she went missing that she was going to walk back to her home in Newcastle. She posted an image of herself on her Instagram with the Lough in the background. The rest of the hen party had gone back to the rented house at around 11:30 pm, and that's when they noticed that Maguire was missing.
Air, water, and ground searches for the missing mother continued on March 18 after it was paused overnight due to bad lighting. The coat that Maguire had been wearing was found at the bar and her phone was switched off. The rest of the hen party women started looking for Maguire the moment they realized she was missing.
Ruth maguire she is part of a hen group from Belfast currently staying in carlingford and is missing from 11pm last night and has made no contact with family or friends &are becoming increasingly worried about her whereabouts anyone who might have seen Ruth ,please get in contact pic.twitter.com/RpptsOS8cu— Dundalk News (@DundalksNews) March 17, 2019
A helicopter from the Irish Coastguard, the Greenore Coastguard, the Belfast Coastguard, and the Kilkeel Lifeboat joined in the massive search on March 17, which was then suspended in the night before beginning again this morning.
The Garda told the Daily Mail on March 18 morning: "Gardaí at Carlingford Co Louth are conducting a search operation along with other agencies in trying to locate a 30-year-old female who became separated from her friends."
The statement continued: "The matter was reported to Gardaí early on Sunday 17th March 2019. Searches were conducted yesterday and have resumed this morning. Investigations are continuing."
The Belfast Telegraph reported that one of Maguire's friends, Colette Delaney, wrote on Facebook that the mother "had no coat and it was freezing" and that she is "worried sick".
She added: "Please God help her be found safe." Another friend of Maguire's, Katrina, also said: "This is totally out of character."
Search ongoing for missing girl in Carlingford. Greenore Coastguards and local Gardaí involved. Please God she will be found safe. pic.twitter.com/Xa7VVAQYvy— Carlingford Lough (@CarlingfordIRE) March 17, 2019
The doorman at the bar said that he overheard Maguire say that she may go home to Newcastle, but her partner and children were in Belfast. He said he drove this morning to Newcastle but found out that she had not gone back home.
A post mortem examination will take place later on the body, which has been removed from the water between Carlingford and Greenore.