Northern Ireland news

Armagh fire victim Kieran Freeman was popular father-of-five and 'gifted mechanic'

Kieran Freeman was found dead following a house fire in the St Brigid's Hill area of Armagh
Mairead Holland

AN Armagh man found dead after a house fire in the city has been described as a popular father-of-five and "gifted mechanic".

Kieran Freeman, who was in his 50s, was found at a house in St Brigid's Hill last Thursday shortly after 4pm.

A small fire in the living room, which appeared to have started earlier in the day, had burnt itself out by the time firefighters arrived.

Members of Community First Responders Armagh and Tyrone also attended.

Stephen Fields of community group West Armagh Consortium said Mr Freeman was a quiet man from a well-known family and his death had come as a shock.

Sinn Féin MLA Cathal Boylan also described Mr Freeman as "a popular man, a gifted mechanic who got on well with all".

"The father-of-five also leaves an 85-year-old mother who is heartbroken. This is tragic news which has shocked the neighbourhood here," he said.

"Our thoughts and sympathies are with the family and friends of the deceased.

"I also wish to commend the emergency services for their efforts and professionalism. Death by incidents of fire unfortunately still occurs far too often.”

A statement from Pearse Óg GAC Armagh also extended its condolences to the Freeman family. Mr Freeman's nephews play for the senior and minor teams.

The Fire and Rescue Service said the blaze was accidental and it would be visiting St Brigid's Hill and neighbouring areas of the city to provide safety advice.

Mr Freeman is survived by his mother Sheila, children Liam, Caira, Reece, Jacody and Samara, and brothers Joey and Jim.

His funeral took place on Sunday at St Malachy's Church in the city.

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