At the time of her disappearance Imelda Keenan was 22 years old and living in Waterford City one hundred miles south of Dublin City. Imelda was originally from Mountmellick Co. Laois, but had moved to Waterford in the late 1980’s. By 1993 Imelda was engaged to her long-term partner Mark Wall.
During the afternoon of Monday the 3rd of January 1994, as reported by Mark Wall, Imelda left her apartment on William’s street Waterford City just after 1pm to collect a social welfare payment from a local post office. However, Monday the 3rd of January 1994 was a delayed bank holiday as New Year’s Day that year had fallen on a Saturday, this meant that the post office would have been closed that Monday. This could have been a simple mistake as the days around Christmas and New Years in Ireland sometimes merge together and people often lose track of what day of the week it is. Also Imelda was a student studying computing at C.T.I Waterford and would have had per-longed holidays over the Christmas period perhaps making her unaware that the 3rd of January was a bank holiday.
At 1:30pm that afternoon Imelda was spotted by a local doctor’s secretary at Lombard Street Waterford. According to author Barry Cummins the secretary knew Imelda and as she drove from the Quay onto William’s street Imelda stopped in the middle of the road to allow her car to pass. The secretary then saw Imelda walk around the corner of the Tower Hotel onto Lombard Street. However, this sighting has been disputed and has the account that secretary knew Imelda. Nevertheless this is the last reported sighting of Imelda.
When Imelda’s family arrived at her apartment after she was reported missing they found Imelda’s glasses, handbag and cigarettes. They also found Christmas presents addressed to Imelda unopened leading them to believe that she hadn’t run away.
Imelda's brother Gerry told the Sun Newspaper, during January 2019, on the 25th anniversary of Imelda's disappearance that he believed Imelda was most likely kidnapped and possibly murdered. "I know Imelda was probably kidnapped, maybe she was murdered, I don't know. 25 years down the road, I'm wondering, is she going to come back to us at all?"
Much like the disappearance of Eva Brennan the Gardi were slow to act and labelled Imelda’s disappearance as unsuspicious. There was no forensic examination of Imelda’s apartment, however the river Suir near Imelda’s home was searched but no evidence of Imelda was found. Imelda had made numerous contacts throughout the world through something known as citizens’ band radio, these contacts were followed up but no leads were established. Imelda has a total of nine siblings and a small circle of friends yet none reported any signs that Imelda was planning to run away in the days and weeks leading up to the 3rd of January nor did they report any contact with Imelda after the 3rd of January. On the 3rd of January 2022 Imelda will have been missing for 28 years, unfortunately there is little indication that Imelda will be found nor will her family get the answers they deserve.