Fermanagh duo honoured at National Bravery Awards

TWO brave Fermanagh men were recognised for their act of courage at the National Police Public Bravery Awards.

Bernard McDonald and Paul Shannon were two of only 13 other recipients across the United Kingdom to receive Gold Awards at the event held in Sheffield for their efforts during a fatal house fire in Derrylin in 2018.

Both Bernard and Paul were accompanied to the awards ceremony by the Police Service of Northern Ireland’s Assistant Chief Constable Chris Todd, Fermanagh and Omagh District Commander Superintendent Mervyn Seffen and former Chairman of the Northern Ireland Policing Board, Doug Garrett.


Bernard and Paul were awarded for their selfless acts following a fatal house fire at the Molly Road area of Derrylin on February 27, 2018, in which 45-year-old Denise Gosset, 19-year-old Sabrina Gosset,16-year old Roman Gosset and 16-month-old Morgana Quinn sadly lost their lives.

Speaking at the awards ceremony Bernard said, “We are delighted to receive the Gold National Police Public Bravery Awards and we would like to thank the Police Service of Northern Ireland for their nomination.

“It was a great occasion to be present and one that we will remember for a very long time.”

Paul added, “To be honoured in this manner is very flattering and humbling.

“These awards are also in memory of those who lost their lives on that tragic day, as well as those responders who attended the scene of the fire in 2018.”

On that fateful day, Bernard was travelling to work when he saw black smoke coming from a house. He quickly contacted Paul, who lived nearby to the property and after explaining what he saw both men arrived a short time later.

Fermanagh and Omagh District Commander Superintendent Mervyn Seffen added: “Bernard and Paul had no thought for their own personal safety when they attended the house fire in Derrylin, which sadly resulted in the deaths of four people. Despite the perilous conditions and the obstacles within the property, their only concern was for those inside.


“Although both men are extremely humble and played-down their efforts, they provided a vital role in the arrest and subsequent charge of a man for this incident. They should be extremely proud of their actions and are both a credit to the community of Fermanagh.”

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