“It’s very sad. Hope is fading and I have talked to the families, who are in the lifeboat station and who are very upset,” said Eugene Clonan, assistant director of the Irish Coast Guard service.
The two men, who originate from Skerries, were close friends and experienced seamen and qualified marine engineers. Mr. Browne recently bought the boat which he named the Lady Linda after his wife who he married last September. Mr Gilsenan and his wife Suzanne have two young children, aged six and nine and live in the nearby village of Rush.
A large scale search, including an Irish Defense Force Casa aircraft and Irish Coast Guard S-61, an AW139 and a Garda EC-135 helicopters have been launched around the Skerries on Friday evening after the men failed to return home. It is understood that a small boat located off Clogherhead in Co Louth belonged to the men.
Hundreds of volunteers and fishermen joined the Coast Guard, the Gardai, and the RNLI lifeboat crews from Howth, Skerries, and Clogerhead joined together in a sea and coastline search after the alarm was raised at 6.30pm on Friday when a fisherman realized the pair had failed to return to the harbor. The search area stretches from Greenore in Co Louth to Ireland's Eye. A search of the coastline is also taking place.