Name of Ireland's longest missing person engraved on family headstone in Waterford

Name of Ireland's longest missing person engraved on family headstone in Waterford

The name of Ireland's longest missing person has been engraved on his family's headstone after 75 years.

Jimmy O'Neill disappeared from Waterford City when he was only 16 years old, back in December 1947.

He worked for a shipping company in the area, before vanishing without trace.

Jimmy was born on 26th of November 1931 and would now be 91 years old.


His younger brother, Frank, says he recently put his name on his family's headstone in Ballygunner, Co. Waterford.

"The simple reason why I decided to put it on the headstone, he was gone at this stage for 75 years, it's a very long time."

"In all aspects of headstones, you might be startled with that idea, but if you have grief in your system, you'll do anything to alleviate that grief.

According to Newstalk, his younger brother Frank, who was five-years-old at the time, says he never came home from work.

Jimmy was working on the day of his disappearance


At the time he was working for the Clyde Shipping Company which operated between Waterford and Liverpool.

But on one of his days off, he disappeared and it is thought that he stowed away on a ship.

Nothing was ever heard of him again.

There was a suggestion that he could have gone to New Zealand but there have been no official sightings or evidence.


Newstalk reports that Jimmy had a half day at work and never came home.

An 'SOS' was placed in the local newspapers, but to no avail.

Frank says he may have got a boat to Liverpool, but he's not certain.

He says the incident devastated his family.

"It broke my parent's heart - both of them - it killed them in the long run."

Jimmy is one of 876 long-term missing people on the island of Ireland.

Anyone with any information is asked to come forward.

A facebook page was also set up for the family of Jimmy O'Neill to help people make contact in the appeal.