National Bravery Awards 2016

Photos of the 2016 awards
 


CITATION

On 21st June, 2014, Rick Osagie who was 13 at the time and some friends were playing near a man-made lake in Waterville Park in Blanchardstown. When two young girls who were swimming in the lake got into difficulty, Ricky Osagie jumped in to assist the girls but lost his own footing and was unable to regain it. Lee Weir, Sam Musu, Yosuf Bologun and Ionut Plesca who were playing football near the lake when they became aware that people were in difficulties. Lee, Sam, Yosuf and Ionut all entered the water and were able to bring the two girls to the shallow end and pulled them out of the water. After giving CPR to one of the girls, they were informed that Ricky was still in the water. Lee then re-entered the water at the deep end, but could not see anything as the water was too muddy. Other bystanders also entered the water and had no success. The Ambulance Service then arrived and after finding Ricky took him from the water and initiated CPR. He along with the two girls who had originally experienced difficulties were conveyed to Temple Street Children’s Hospital. The two girls ultimately made full recoveries. Tragically Ricky Osagie was pronounced dead the following morning.

For their actions
Lee Weir is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Sam Musu is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Yosuf Bologun is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Ionut Plesca is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Rick Osagie is awarded a Posthumous Gold Medal and Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION


On the morning of the 10th October, 2015 shortly after 4:00am, John Connors heard a loud bang coming from a caravan at Unit 2 that belonged to his brother Thomas Connors. He then saw flames emanating from the front kitchen window of the caravan, before raising the alarm by waking another brother Jim Connors Jnr. and his wife Kate,  who were asleep. Jim Connors initially attempted to gain entry by forcing open the front door. After breaking the window of the front of the caravan, Jim reached in through the broken window of the main bedroom and removed an infant and handed her to his wife. John Connors contacted ambulance control and the Dublin Fire Brigade on his mobile. John then entered the burning caravan through the broken window of the main bedroom and rescued his brother Thomas. John then handed another child out through the window to Jim Connors Snr. before exiting himself. Several units of the Dublin Fire Brigade and the Ambulance Service arrived at the scene. On their arrival Unit 2 was fully engulfed in flames. There were also flames emanating from the caravan at Unit 3. Subsequently, Mary Connors was removed from that caravan by Dublin Fire Brigade personnel. The fire at both caravans was then contained by the Dublin Fire Brigade. Ultimately, 10 people perished in this incident.

For his actions
John Connors is awarded a Silver Medal and Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On Sunday 02nd March 2016 shortly after 7:00PM, Gardaí were called to the pier in Buncrana based on a report that there was a car in the water with a number of occupants inside. As the incident unfolded, it transpired that five members of one family were tragically drowned. All five bodies were recovered amid harrowing scenes. It was apparent that there was one survivor from the car which was submerged in approximately 12 feet of water a short distance from the pier in tidal waters. Davitt Walsh who had been on the upper extension of their pier in his car along with his girlfriend, noticed a car in the water. The driver of the car was in a distressed state and there were shouts from the car. Mr. Walsh’s girlfriend rang the coastguard while he dived into the water and swam out to the car. The driver had broken the driver-side window and handed out a small baby to Mr. Walsh. Mr. Walsh took the baby and had a grip on another male but lost his grip. As he held the baby, the car started to go down. He managed to hold the baby above his head and swam back to the pier cutting and injuring his feet in the process. The baby was later brought to Letterkenny University Hospital where she made a full recovery.
 
For his actions
Davitt Walsh is awarded a Silver Medal and Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

Garda Matthew Murphy and Garda John Prunty were on duty on 21st May, 2012 in the Letterkenny District. Tey received a call regarding a young man who was in possession of a number of weapons and who had threatened Gardaí and neighbours with a knife and subsequently had barricaded himself into his residence. They liaised with local Gardaí including Garda Ger Hardiman and Garda Eoin Waters who were attending at the scene and were informed of how events had developed over the afternoon. Several attempts had been made to enter the premises and apprehend the young man but this proved unsuccessful. The young man who was in his late twenties was described as having a history of violence and on occasion had brandished a knife, threatened to stab Gardaí and injure anyone who came close to his home. It became apparent that a strong smell of gas was emanating from the property. The Gardaí took immediate steps to evacuate neighbouring houses and keep everyone at the scene a safe distance from the house fearing the possibility of a gas explosion. Garda Murphy and Prunty decided to try access the house by forcing the front door. Two other Gardaí, Garda Ger Hardiman and Garda Eoin Waters followed them.  Upon entry it became apparent that a fire was out of control somewhere in the property. Facing significant danger from both the fire and a potentially violent man the Gardaí made their way through the hall by crawling through smoke, checking each room as they passed. The smoke was extremely dense and they had to exit the property on three occasions to clear their lungs but they still persisted in their search. They managed to make their way to the rear of the house where a large section of the house was ablaze.  Kitchen units were on fire and several live electrical appliances posed a significant risk.  Garda Murphy and Garda Prunty discovered the young man lying unconscious on the floor beside the blazing fire and assisted by Garda Hardiman and Garda Waters brought him to a safe area at the front of the house where they administrated first aid pending the arrival of the ambulance despite both having sustained injuries themselves. By the time the ambulance arrived the young man had regained consciousness and the paramedics took over his care. Both Gardaí Murphy and Prunty were treated for smoke inhalation at the scene.

For their actions
Garda Matthew Murphy is awarded a Bronze Medal and Certificate of Bravery, Garda John Prunty is awarded a Bronze Medal and Certificate of Bravery. Garda Ger Hardiman is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Garda Eoin Waters is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 06th May, 2005, a man entered the Post Office on Botanic Road Glasnevin, Dublin 9 wearing a balaclava and black gloves and brandishing a small hand-gun and a knife. Just as he entered the Post Office he was confronted by a member of the public by the name of Alibanga Musifer. Mr. Musifer grabbed the man by the arms and the two men began a struggle which ultimately led to the two men crashing through the front window of the Post Office and falling out into the street. Mr. Musifer received injuries from the fall but still restrained the accused until the Gardaí arrived at the scene.

For his actions
Alibanga Musifer is awarded a Bronze Medal and Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 07th August, 2014, John Purcell was walking his dog with his partner when he heard two women screaming at their front door  on Leinster Street, Phibsborough, Dublin 7. He went to assist and was confronted by a man who was hitting the two women with a hammer. Without hesitation Mr. Purcell grabbed the first lady and pulled her out of the doorway to safety. The second lady was then pushed back into the house by the assailant. Mr. Purcell entered the house to rescue her but he was confronted by the assailant who swung his hammer at him. The assailant then ran from the house and Mr. Purcell gave chase. The Gardaí arrived soon after and arrested the man. The two women were taken to hospital where they made a full recovery.

For his actions
John Purcell is awarded a Bronze Medal and Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 30th July, 2014, Billy Cronin who was 14 at the time was bodyboarding at “The Dumps” strand at the Maharees in Brandon Bay, Maharabeg, Castlegregory, Co. Kerry. He became aware of a brother and sister who were experiencing difficulties in the water. He went over to them and got the young boy who was 14 at the time on his body board and kept the young girl who was 12 afloat. Kitesurfer Tom Kennedy also joined in the rescue after seeing the children’s father pacing frantically on the shore. The siblings were safely brought back to shore and were reunited with their father.

For their actions
Billy Cronin is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Tom Kennedy is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

At approximately 9:00 PM on the 18th May, 2015, a woman entered the River Shannon unassisted at Harvey’s Quay, Limerick. At the time of the incident the river was high and there was a strong current flowing southward. Brian O’Dea who was a customer in a local pub at the time became aware of the situation and ran straight over to Harvey’s Quay and jumped into the river. He was able to get hold of her within a few minutes and held onto her until Robert Byrnes was dining in a nearby restaurant when he observed the incident and went out to assist. Robert Byrnes and Brian O’Dea were both able to hold onto the woman and bring her to the river’s edge. A Limerick Marine Search and Rescue Boat and the Limerick Fire Service were on the scene within a few minutes and provided rescue ropes to assist the people in the water. The woman was removed from the water along with Mr. O’Dea and Mr. Byrnes. The woman was then conveyed by ambulance to the University Hospital, Limerick. Sadly, despite the efforts by the people at the scene and the medical staff at the University Hospital she died.

For their actions
Robert Byrnes is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Brian O’Dea is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On Saturday 14th November 2015, Garda Doyle and Garda O’Neill from the Dublin Metropolitan Traffic Corp based in Dublin Castle while carrying out their duties heard a call in relation to a female who had entered the sea at Dun Laoghaire.  Both Gardaí are qualified lifeguards and Emergency First Responders and hey arrived on the scene within minutes.  An RNLI Lifeboat was being dispatched at the other side of the Harbour.  At first the female was able to converse with the Gardaí but with the waves crashing over her she became unresponsive.  As Garda Doyle and Garda O’Neill feared for her safety they took the decision to enter the water in an  attempt to rescue her.  The Gardí  linked together and utilised a rope given to them by Kyron O’Gorman an Irish Coast Guard Officer who remained on shore and they managed to reach her before the waves took her under.  They succeeded in bringing her ashore.  The Lifeboat arrived and the female was treated for hypothermia until the ambulance arrived and took her to hospital.

For their actions
Garda Lee Doyle is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Garda Eoghan O’Neill is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On the evening of December 15th, 2014, An Garda Siochána were informed that there was a man threatening suicide near Barrington’s Hospital in Limerick. He was visibly upset and had a knife in his hand and was walking up and down the jetty threatening to jump into the water if anyone approached him. Limerick City Fire Service was contacted and two fire units subsequently arrived. After being informed of the man’s behaviour Firefighter Colum McCarthy and Firefighter Des Fitzgerald walked onto the jetty and were making their way towards the man when he jumped into the river. Firefighters McCarthy and Fitzgerald immediately jumped into the river after him. The river was flowing very fast on the night in question, but they reached the man very quickly. The men were in the water for approximately ten minutes when other fire personnel managed to lower a ladder into the river and return the men to safety. The man was attended to by Ambulance personnel and later taken to hospital.

For their actions
Fireman Des Fitzgerald is awarded a Certificate of Bravery. Fireman Colum McCarthy is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 10th May, 2011, Cathal McDaid (RIP) and John DeSilva who were along with three others working on the “Mark Amay 11” when Mr. McDaid stumbled on the deck as the nets were being lowered into the water and fell into the sea. He appeared to hold on to the nets and called out for the nets to be pulled back up. As the nets were being pulled up another crew member fell into the water and became trapped under the net. He was then observed floating inertly on his back and drifting astern of the vessel. A third crewmember threw a life ring into the water. He helped get the boat nearer to Cathal McDaid’s position. John DeSilva then went into the water. Mr. DeSilva got Mr. McDaid to the side of the boat and tried to pull him up. A cremember then went into the water and tried to assist. Mr. DeSilva then went back into the boat and launched the life raft assisted. Cathal McDaid was lifted into the life raft and CPR was administered but Cathal McDaid could not be resuscitated.

For his actions
John DeSilva is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

At approximately 4:29 pm on 07th April 2016, a fire began in house on Cullenbeg Park, Mountmellick, Co. Laois. Mark Fleming who was nearby was alerted by a neighbour that there was a fire in the house. He called 999 before making his way into the house. He assisted the home owner to the ground floor. He then went up to the first floor and despite the limited visibility due to the smoke he located a female occupant of the house. He carried the woman down the stairs where another helper assisted him. It was then that the Laois County Fire and Rescue Service arrived. Despite Mark’s best efforts the lady in question was pronounced deceased some time after.

For his actions
Mark Fleming is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 20th May, 2016, a three year old boy was walking through Cork City with his au pair and his 18-month-old sister when he ran over to the water’s edge near Brian Boru Bridge. Before the au pair could grab him, he had slipped and fallen 15 feet into the water below. Frantic the au pair started screaming for someone to take the buggy she had been pushing, so that she could jump in after the boy. As this was happening, Maria Foley who was a passerby had dived into the river to rescue the child. Maria was witnessed holding the child above water and when the Fire Service arrived at the scene they assisted in the removal of both from the water. They were subsequently conveyed to the Mercy Hospital where they both made full recoveries.

For her actions
Maria Foley is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 14th July, 2014 at approximately 7:30 p.m., a call was received at Dungarvan Garda Station concerning a male who had entered the Colligan River, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford and who appeared to be in distress. Garda David Hearne from Waterford Station proceeded to the scene. The man appeared to be barely above the surface of the water approximately 300 meters distant from where Garda Hearne was standing. Garda Hearne entered the water carrying a lifebuoy and swam as quickly as possible towards the man, calling to him and encouraging him to remain calm. During this time, he observed the man disappear below the surface completely on four or five occasions, resurfacing on each occasion after a few seconds. When Garda Hearne reached the man, he heaved him towards his body and secured his head clear of the water using the ringbuoy as an aid. He then swam to shore where the fire brigade crew assisted in bringing them both to safety. The man was conveyed to University Hospital Waterford where he made a full recovery.

For his actions
Garda David Hearne is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 15th July, 2015, Alan Herdman was paddle-boarding in Rusheen Bay, Barna, Co. Galway when he was alerted by a dog-walker on the beach there were eight children (aged between eight and twelve) who had become trapped on a sandbank by the incoming tide. By the time he had reached them, one girl had disappeared beneath the waves. Mr. Herdman dived under the water, located the girl and brought her back to the surface. He then put some of the children on his board and told the others to hold on to him. He almost went under himself due to the children’s weight, but managed to use his whistle to attract the attention of his colleagues from the nearby Windsurfing School to help him the children back to shore. Another girl had gone under the waves, but he managed to grab her before she disappeared.

For his actions
Alan Herdman is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 03rd October, 2014, Ian Jackman jumped from a fishing vessel into the River Slaney, Co. Wexford. Upon witnessing a man in difficulty, Mr. Jackman swam a considerable distance to assist to assis this man, who had moments earlier jumped into the water at Commercial Quay. The waters were cold and dark at the time but Mr. Jackman managed to hold the man for ten minutes until Wexford R.N.L.I. Lifeboat arrived to take them both to safety.

For his actions
Ian Jackman is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On the night of 14th December 2014, a fire occurred in the house of an elderly lady who had limited mobility and many ailments necessitating medical equipment such as oxygen, concentrators and a bipap machine. When the fire started she phoned her neighbour Mr. Gerry Keenan who soon afterwards entered the building and assisted the elderly lady. It should be noted that there was a gas heater close to where the fire started but this did not deter Mr. Keenan who brought her to safety and then alerted the Ambulance, Fire Service and Gardaí who attended the scene. The lady spent one month in hospital and was later discharged

For his actions
Gerry Keenan is awarded a Certificate of Bravery


CITATION

At 11:15 pm on 28th August 2015, the Kilmore Quay lifeboat received a phone call from a member of the public worried about an overdue vessel called the Jillian. At 11:45 the registered ferry boat An Crosan left Kilmore Quay to aid in the search. This boat contained Sam Nunn, Ruari Nunn, Brian Kehoe and Niall McGee. As they arrived near the Great Saltee Island they heard what they believed to be cries in the darkness. They turned off the boat’s engine and used a searchlight to discover the upturned Jillian with ten people clinging to the hull. Within minutes the crew of An Crosan had got the ten survivors on board. They had been in the water for five hours and showed clear signs of hypothermia. At approximately 12:25 the lifeboat arrived and took one very unwell casualty from An Crosan who was brought to Wexford General Hospital where tragically he was pronounced dead. The rest of the survivors of the Jillian made full recoveries.

For their actions
The Kilmore Quay Lifeboat Crew is awarded a group Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

At approximately 7:00 pm on 05th May 2016, John Anthony Maher was alerted by his wife that the house next door was on fire. They raised the alarm as they knew a family of four lived in this house. One of the children an 8 year old boy managed to open the front door and John’s wife took him to safety. John ran into the house where he met the mother in the hall and the father who was in the back garden trying to fight the flames with a hose. John advised the father that they should evacuate the house. The other child a four year old daughter was asleep upstairs and the father’s mother was asleep in the bedroom over the garage. John assisted in waking up and removing these people. Despite being disoriented by the smoke, John re-entered the house to rescue the family’s pet dog.

For his actions
John Anthony Maher is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 11th May 2015, Brian Murphy was driving over the bridge at Innishannon in a tractor when he saw a wheelchair. He recognised it from an incident that had taken place on 4th May 2015 when he had assisted in the rescue of a man who had gone missing. From the bridge, John saw the same man heading towards the river with the aid of walking sticks. Mr. Murphy pulled in the tractor and rang the Gardaí in Bandon for assistance. He then ran towards the river and saw that he didn’t have time to wait for assistance, as the man was already entering the water. With no delay, Mr. Murphy entered the water and followed the man out into the middle of the water. The man struggled with Mr. Murphy as he tried to free himself but was unable. At this point two Gardaí from Bandon Garda Station arrived. One of them entered the water and assisted Mr. Murphy in bringing the man back to the shore where other Garda helped in getting the man onto the slippery bank.

For his actions
Brian Murphy is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.

 


CITATION

At approximately 2:00 am on the 20th December, 2015 Dylan Murphy who was 16 years of age at the time was finishing his shift at the Anchor Bar, Davitt’s Quay, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford when he was informed that there was a woman in the River Colligan and she was experiencing difficulty in the water. Dylan along with two colleagues ran out to the quay wall and observed the woman who was in distress. Dylan got a life buoy from the quay wall and jumped into the river. His two friends both stayed at the quay wall and held onto the rope which was attached to the life buoy. Dylan swam out to the lady and by the time he reached where she had been located he had to dive beneath the water to find her. Dylan managed to locate her and he attached the rope around the lady concerned who appeared lifeless. His friends pulled the rope attached to the life buoy in towards the quay wall while Dylan swam behind ensuring that the lady stayed afloat. The lady was lifted up over the quay wall and placed into the recovery position at the quayside after which paramedics arrived and she was treated and removed to hospital.

For his actions
Dylan Murphy is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On the afternoon of 09th August, 2014, Aaron O’Kelly and two friends were surfing at Tullan Strand in Bundoran, Co. Donegal. There was a big ground swell, an offshore wind and an incoming tide. They noticed people shouting and waving on the cliff top. They could see someone on a surfing board in trouble at the foot of the cliff. He had got caught in the riptide and was being pulled in towards the rocks. He was inexperienced and was trying to battle against the current but was obviously exhausted. Mr. O’Kelly surfed in and got the man to hold onto the leash of his board and paddled the two of them to safer water. The lifeboat arrived at this point and got the man on board. He spent a night in Sligo General Hospital and subsequently made a full recovery.

For his actions
Aaron O’Kelly is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.


CITATION

On 13th November, 2015, Patrick O’Sullivan (who was 16 at the time) was walking back to his grandparents’ house in Jobstown at approximately 3:30pm when he heard a woman screaming. He ran to help and saw a man trying to steal her handbag. He intervened, but the thief managed to take the bag during the struggle and fled on a bike. Mr. O’Sullivan gave chase for a short distance, but returned to help the woman who was still screaming. He escorted her to her parents’ home. It was only when she was safely in the house that he noticed blood seeping through his clothes. He was rushed to Tallaght Hospital and underwent emergency surgery when consultants realised that he had internal bleeding.

For his actions
Patrick O’Sullivan is awarded a Certificate of Bravery.