By Ursula Duddy


The family of victims of the Buncrana Pier tragedy said they have received a claim against the deceased’s estate from a woman who helped at the scene.

Sean McGrotty, 48, his sons, Mark, 12, and Evan, 8, along with the boys' grandmother, Ruth Daniels, 58, and their aunt, Jodie-Lee, 14, died on March 20, 2016.

The sole survivor of the accident was Mr McGrotty’s baby daughter, Rioghnach-Ann, who was only four-months-old at the time. She was saved by Davitt Walsh, who swam out to the jeep and rescued the baby before it went under water.

Stephanie Knox, who was Mr Walsh’s partner at that time, was also present at the scene alongside Francis Crawford and his wife, Kay.

Ms Knox (pictured below), who is a cardiac physiologist, helped warm the baby when she was brought to shore while awaiting the emergency services.

Just ahead of the second anniversary of the tragedy, the late Mr McGrotty’s 86-year-old father, Noel, received a legal letter from Ms Knox. She wishes to claim an undisclosed amount from the estate of his late son for loss of earnings and other matters.


Speaking from his home, Mr McGrotty, who lost his son, Sean, and two grandchildren, Mark and Evan, in the tragedy, said the letter arrived by recorded delivery.

“It was a private delivery and I had to sign for it; it was a big envelope full of legal documents - hard for the ordinary man in the street to understand,” he said.

“Then I saw the name Knox and realised it was from the girl that took the baby when she was brought out of the water that day.”

Mr McGrotty said he did not know why the package arrived at his house, as he is not the executor of his son's estate.

The second anniversary of the Buncrana Pier tragedy was last week.

The inquest was held in November 2017.

If you have a story or want to send a photo or video to us please contact the Derry Now editorial team on 028 7129 6600 for Derry City stories Or 028 7774 3970 for County Derry stories. Or you can email [email protected] or [email protected] at any time.