• Wed. Aug 17th, 2022

Remains of Mary O’Keeffe (72) found at a forest in north Cork on Thursday

Feb 7, 2021

A 62 year-old man in due to appear in court on Sunday to be charged with the murder of a woman (72) whose body was found in a burning car in a forest in north Cork earlier this week.
Gardaí in Fermoy received directions from Director of Public Prosecutions late on Saturday night to charge the man with the murder of mother of three, Mary OKeeffe from Dromahane near Mallow.
The man, who is from Ardpatrick in Co Limerick, was charged at Fermoy Garda station at 11.30pm on Saturday night with the murder of Ms OKeeffe at Dromdeer, Doneraile on February 4th.
The man is due to appear before a special court sitting of Fermoy at 11am on Sunday morning when he will be formally charged with the killing of Ms OKeeffe.
The man had been arrested by gardaí at about 4pm on Friday after he was discharged from Cork University Hospital (CUH) where he had been treated for hypothermia and burns to his face. He had been brought to CUH on Thursday afternoon after he was rescued from the Awbeg river between Doneraile and Castletownroche by members of the Armed Support Unit from Cork.
Gardaí had been alerted after a passerby reported seeing a car on fire in a Coillte forest at Dromdeer, some 5km from Doneraile.
The firefighters from the Mallow unit of the Cork County Fire Service managed to extinguish the fire but it was clear that the woman was deceased and the scene and car were preserved by gardaí.
Assistant State Pathologist, Dr Margaret Bolster carried out a preliminary examination of the body of the woman in the badly damaged Dacia Duster which was registered to the Limerick man.
The body of the woman, named locally as Ms OKeeffe, was later removed to Cork University Hospital where Dr Bolster carried out a postmortem examination on Friday afternoon. Gardahí ave not released Dr Bolsters findings at postmortem or the result of a garda technical examination of the mans car for operational reasons .
A widow, Ms OKeeffe was known to the suspectand gardai believe that she had had travelled in her own Ford Eco Sport from her home in Dromahane to the remote forest at Dromdeer. A native of Lombardstown, Ms OKeeffe lived on her own in Dromahane and worked as cook with the Mallow Sheltered Care project, cooking for around 20 residents in the centre in Sunnyhill.
Ms OKeeffe, who was widowed many years ago when her husband, Donal OKeeffe died, is survived by her three sons, Ger and twins, Christie and Donal who are all believed to be in their 40s.
Ger Monkey OKeeffe became quite well known as the lead singer with Cork heavy metal band, Sunking in the early 2000s and at one point auditioned to replace Bruce Dickinson in Iron Maiden.
Ms OKeeffes remains have not yet been released to her family but it is expected that a family funeral will take place in Dromahane over the coming days in keeping with Covid-19 guidelines.