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Northern Ireland man dies in Thailand - father's agony as son he traced 29 years after adoption passes away


David Orr

David Orr

Pattaya in Thailand

Pattaya in Thailand

David Orr

The devastated family of a Co Tyrone father-of-three who died in a motorcycle accident in Thailand have described him as "a wild, free spirit" who "lived life to the full".

Drumquin man Davy Orr (47) died in the city of Pattaya during the early hours of Friday.

He had been living there with his second wife Lorm and their daughter Chalisa (13).

His grieving father Brian (70), who had traced Davy 18 years ago following his adoption as a baby, said the loss had been "very traumatic" for the family.

He added that Davy's death meant he had "lost him twice".

He revealed the family's trauma had been compounded after photos and videos of Davy's body lying at the crash scene were shared online.

"We have heard that Davy suffered a motorcycle accident when he went to get food for himself and Chalisa," the Coleraine man said.

"He was coming back with the food and we don't know what happened.

"We have read in news reports that he lost control, there was a trash can at the side of the road and he struck it.

"There was some sort of wooden structure dumped at the side of the road which acted as a ramp, he went up it and fell on a rocky area. He suffered a head injury.

"There was a pulse when they found him and they tried to revive him, but he passed away at the scene.

"A man appeared at the door of his house in Pattaya to tell Chalisa her dad had been killed in the accident.

"She is very traumatised and her school took her in to keep her safe.

"His wife Lorm was in northern Thailand and had to drive eight hours to get home.

"Chalisa rang through to my 14-year-old granddaughter here to tell us what had happened.

"It was about 2am here and she came in to wake us up, she was very upset. It's a big shock, he was so young. At least we did have those last 18 years. We have lost him twice - the adoption at the start and now this.

"We are all devastated, trying to get our heads round it."

He slammed the heartless onlookers who filmed his son after the accident and revealed the body may have been targeted by thieves.

"There are about three videos online and photos which were put up within the hour. It's adding to the family's grief," he said.

"Also, Davy always wore a Tag Heuer watch, he never took it off, and we think it was stolen from his body.

"You can see from the photos being shared that he doesn't have it on his arm."

In addition to Brian, and his family in Thailand, Davy is survived by his mother Anne, sisters Caroline, Susan and Gillian, his children Adam (17) and Nicole (15) from his first marriage, and his adoptive father Cecil Orr.

He was predeceased by his adoptive mother May.

Davy was a trader on the stock market who had spent years moving between Northern Ireland and Thailand.

He had worked in contract farming with rice harvesters in northern Thailand and at one stage owned a fish farm.

"Davy lived life to the full," his father said. "He had a saying: 'Life's for the living'.

"He had always had a love of Thailand and said he would die and be buried out there, so his funeral will be held out there.

"We are also in the process of organising a family gathering in Northern Ireland to remember him.

"He was a big character. If he was there, the craic would have been the best. I will remember him as a fun-loving big lad, a very strong man."

Caroline, Susan and Gillian also paid tribute.

"We were so happy to have met Davy, our big brother, around 18 years ago," they said.

"Nothing can make up for the time we lost in childhood, but we will cherish every moment we got to spend with him during those 18 years in later life.

"He was not just a big brother, but a true friend who we all shared a lot of fun and happy times with.

"He will never be forgotten and has left us with so many beautiful memories.

"He was a wild, free spirit and lived life to the full.

"He always told us: 'Life is too short, live it to the full'. He was caring and would run through walls for family and friends."

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: "We are offering advice and support to the family of a British man following his death in a traffic accident in Thailand, and are in contact with the Thai authorities."

Belfast Telegraph