Family are 'forever in the debt' of slain officer
The family of a young mother fighting for her life after being gunned down by her ex-partner have praised the police officer who died trying to save her.
Siobhan Phillips (21) was shot several times as she went to collect belongings from a house she shared with dissident republican suspect Adrian Crevan Mackin.
Crevan Mackin (24) then turned his illegally-held Glock pistol on Garda Anthony Golden (36), who went with mother-of-two Ms Phillips to protect her, before killing himself.
The tragedy in the quiet seaside village of Omeath, Co Louth, as most of Ireland watched a Rugby World Cup qualifier, has rocked the country.
Sean and Norma Phillips, parents of Siobhan, said Mr Golden, a married father-of-three, laid down his life to save their daughter. His funeral takes place today at St Oliver Plunkett Church, Blackrock, Co Louth.
"We would like to pay tribute to and express our condolences to the family and colleagues of Garda Anthony Golden," they said in a statement.
"Garda Golden, in the service and protection of others, laid down his life for my daughter Siobhan, myself and my family.
"There are no words to express our gratitude for his bravery, we are forever in his debt."
Mr and Mrs Phillips said their "beautiful daughter Siobhan, a loving mother, sister and friend" is still fighting for her life at Beaumont Hospital in Dublin.
"For now, we pray for Siobhan's recovery and for the family of Garda Golden as they face their immeasurable grief," they said. "We ask for privacy for our family and Siobhan's small children at this time."