A post-exam holiday turned into a nightmare. Max Wall (18) was found unresponsive at Port of Ios having spent the day searching for his friend Andrew O'Donnell (18) who was also found deceased on the Greek island.
The post mortems on two Dublin teenagers, Max Wall and Andrew O'Donnell, are taking place in Athens on Wednesday following the tragic events on the island of Ios, in Greece. The 18-year-olds were part of a group of 90 St. Michael's College students who had traveled to the island to celebrate their final exams, the Leaving Cert.
It has emerged that Wall was one of a group of friends who on Sunday, July 2, had gone in search of O'Donnell who had been missing since Saturday.
O'Donnell had gone missing having become separated from friends on a night out in the town of Hora. His body was located on a rocky path, by a search party, on Sunday morning. O'Donnell's body exhibited injuries consistent with a fall.
Hours later Wall was found unresponsive at the Port of Ios. He was taken to hospital but was pronounced dead shortly afterward. Wall had a pre-existing health condition for which he had undergone successful heart surgery.
On Tuesday, the teens' classmates and other Irish students formed a guard of honor as hearses took the deceased to the local port, which would bring them to Athens where their post-mortems will be carried out.
An Irish government Department of Foreign Affairs consular official accompanied their bodies. It is expected that O'Donnell and Wall will be flown home on Thursday, the Irish Independent reports.
Irish police have traveled to Greece to aid with the ongoing investigation. There is no suggestion of any foul play in either of the deaths.
Sky News reports that there are over 1,000 Irish students currently holidaying on the Greek island. Most of the students who traveled with O'Donnell and Wall are set to fly home from Santorini on Wednesday. The rest will return on Thursday.
The principal of St Michael's College in Dublin has said the school community is 'absolutely devastated' over the deaths of two of its students, Andrew O'Donnell and Max Wall, in separate incidents while on holiday on the Greek island of Ios | Read more: https://t.co/BiPrVYpbZT pic.twitter.com/YnJUFGIqi5— RTÉ News (@rtenews) July 3, 2023
Parents of some of the students, along with members of St. Micheal's School parents' association have traveled to the island to assist the group.
The Principal of St. Michael's College, Tim Kelleher, paid tribute to the deceased saying "These two lads were shining stars – academically, sporting, loads of friends. Andrew was a really good soccer player and Max a great rugby player. They were disciplined about their sport and themselves. It’s just so tragic.”
St. Michael's will hold a memorial service for the boys' families and friends once they are repatriated. On Wednesday, July 5, at 12pm and 6pm, the School Chaplin, Fr. Paddy Moran, and Principal Kelleher will lead memorial services. The school has also opened books of condolence for the students.
Following the tragedy students, parents and members of the public have been leaving floral tributes at the school gates on Ailebury Road, in Dublin. Speaking to those gathered, Fr Moran said: "Max and Andrew died among their friends." He added that those grieving should "hold onto the hope that Christ gives you".