Tributes were paid at a memorial service this afternoon to Rev Dr Stewart Jones, the Prebysterian minister who died while diving off the coast of Donegal at the weekend.
Rev Dr Jones, an experienced diving instructor, died in Sligo General Hospital where he had been airlifted after getting into difficulty off St John’s Point near Dunkineely on Saturday afternoon.
He had been diving with the son a minister from Derry at the time of the tragedy.
Originally from the Bessbrook area of South Armagh, Rev Dr Jones (57), a married man with three adult children, was the Prebysterian Church’s chaplain to Altnagelvin Hospital in Derry minister of Donemana Presbyterian Church.
Speaking at this afternoon’s service in the church, Rev Robert Buick, Clerk of the Derry and Donegal Presbytery, the circumstances around the tragedy may never be fully understood.
Rev Buick said: “Why the events of Saturday, 12 July, at St John’s Point in Donegal, on a fun dive, at a dive site he knew well, resulted in Stewart’s tragic death, we may never fully understand.”
Mr Buick described Dr Jones as “a big guy, not just physically, but mentally and spiritually.”
The service was led by the Moderator of the Derry and Donegal Presbytery, Rev John Hanna.
Rev Dr Jones is survived by his wife Patricia, daughters Esther, Rachel and Anna.