< Derry Ghosts: The Mystery Woman in Blue

The Mystery Woman in Blue

In the early thirties there was a strange happening in Buncrana. The youngest child of a large family, a little girl, went missing. Her family searched everywhere and eventually went down towards the River Crana, fearing the worst. They were aware that in the early 1920’s a little girl called Bridie had been drowned there.

The girl’s sister, who had been left to look after her, hurried, fearful of what she might find. Her heart lifted with relief when she saw a local man coming up the brae holding the child’s hand. Her feet were wet but she was otherwise unhurt. The man told how, when he approached the sea wall, he saw a woman leading the little girl from the water. The woman, a stranger to him, was wearing a long blue dress. She called to him and asked him to return the child to her family. She seemed agitated and pleaded with him to tell the child’s mother that she must always be careful near the water. He assured her that he would do so. When he reached the road he looked back but the woman was nowhere to be seen.

The child’s sister was relieved and thankful that the little girl was safe and sound. Several years later the little girl, now an adult and a sister in a religious order, was working in Naples holding down a very responsible position as a nursing tutor in a teaching hospital. One morning, in the company of another nun from Derry, she decided to go for a swim in the bay. Although she was a strong swimmer a freak wave caught her and pulled her out to sea while throwing her friend up on to the beach. Some nearby men dived in and managed to reach her body but she was already dead.

The family still wonder if the childhood experience was an omen for the future and who exactly was the woman who had rescued her from drowning when she was young.