Mum and daughter named after fatal fire

Published Sunday, 15 April 2012
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The names have been released of a mother and daughter who died in a fire at a house in Dungannon.

Mum and daughter named after fatal fire
Deirdre McGirr and her mother Elizabeth died in the fire. (© PSNI)

Elizabeth McGirr, who was 71, died alongside her 38-year-old daughter Deirdre, after the blaze took hold in Dunlea Vale on Saturday evening.

They were both from the Co Tyrone town.

It is understood the mother, who lived nearby and had recently suffered from a stroke, was visiting her daughter when the fire started at around 10pm.

They were both trapped inside the top flat of the four-flat complex. A man in his 30s was also in the house - he managed to escape unhurt.

Patsy Vincent, their neighbour in the flat below, was out at the time of the fire.

He says he knew the McGirr family all his life and is devastated.

"It's horrific," Mr Vincent told UTV. "It's two beautiful people that have passed away.

"I knew Mrs McGirr all my life, I know Deirdre and her daughters - they lived just up the street from me and it's just an awful thing for Dungannon and everybody."

Sinn Féin MLA for the area, Francie Molloy, told UTV that local people are stunned.

"The entire community is in shock at this fire and the fact that a fire can happen and spread so quickly is the biggest shock for people who live in what they see as safe houses," he said.

"Lucky enough one person we are told actually escaped out of the house but it is particularly shocking this can happen so quickly and a house engulfed in fire so quick."

Forensic officers are currently attending the scene of the tragedy.

Investigations into its cause are ongoing and the PSNI are appealing to anyone who noticed any unusual activity in the area or who has any information to contact them.

The house in Dungannon where a mother and daughter died.
© UTV News
Comments Comments
Jenny in Edmonton, Canada wrote (1,022 days ago):
Im so sorry to hear of this very sad news. I knew Betty and Deidre and this news is devestating. Thinking of Roisin and Eileen at this time, RIP Betty and Deidre.
robert in dundonald wrote (1,023 days ago):
what sad news, r.i.p.
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