Reports on holiday death compounds family’s distress

January 17, 2012

Family and friends of Newry businessman, Terry Davey (67) are horrified that distressing images of the retrieval of his body from the shore at the beach resort in Thailand where he died, have been shown on Thai TV.  The images were also subsequently posted on the video website, YouTube.

Mr Davey, a prominent businessman in Newry and former owner of House of Sport on Hill Street, was understood to have been in Thailand on business.  He reportedly drowned close to where his body was found at the Siam Bay Shore Hotel in the city of Pattaya.  A 32 year old man walking to work is thought to have raised the alarm around 5.30am local time on Sunday 8th January.  Local media in Thailand said there was no evidence of foul play and that it was estimated Mr Davy had died a few hours before being found.

Graphic images appeared on Thai TV showing the retrieval of Mr Davey’s body from the water and it’s examination on the pier, all watched by passers-by.  The disturbing scenes were broadcast on YouTube within hours of the tragedy.

Mr Davey’s body was sent for autopsy and the British Embassy was last week supporting the family in making arrangements to bring his remains home.

Friends of the Newry man have branded the Thai TV footage as “disgusting” and local councillors have expressed their sympathy for Mr Davey’s family, who are well known and respected throughout the city.  Terry Davey’s father, Hugh, was a Northern Ireland football international player who ended his illustrious career with Belfast Celtic.

Independent Newry councillor, Jackie Patterson, who is a friend and former schoolmate of Mr Davey, described the broadcasting of the images as “distressing.”

“It is very sad for the family.” He said, “All our thoughts are with them at this time. The family are highly respected.”

SDLP Newry and Armagh MLA Dominic Bradley also expressed his sadness at the death of the popular Newry businessman.

Mr Bradley said: “Coping with a death is never easy and, for his family, coping with a death so far from home must be extremely difficult.

“Unfortunately, insensitive reporting of Mr Davey’s death in Thailand may also have added extra grief on his family and friends.

“Mr Davey was a well-respected businessman in the local area and added considerably to the local community. He will be sorely missed. I offer the deepest sympathies, on behalf of the SDLP and those we represent, to his family and friends.”