Tributes paid to retired garda who died in house fire

Frank Stafford snr was in his home in Kilkenny with his daughter

Fire services were at the scene in  Graiguenamanagh for several hours and extinguished the fire at about 4am on Tuesday. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times

Fire services were at the scene in Graiguenamanagh for several hours and extinguished the fire at about 4am on Tuesday. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien / The Irish Times

 

Tributes are being paid to a retired garda sergeant who died in a house fire in the early hours of Tuesday in Co Kilkenny.

Frank Stafford snr (85) was in his bungalow with one of his daughters, who is in her 50s, when the blaze broke out about midnight in Graiguenamanagh.

Emergency services from the village and nearby Thomastown went quickly to the house, which is located beside the Garda station on Main Street and where Mr Stafford was stationed for the majority of his working life.

The injured woman, who cares for her father, was taken to St Luke’s Hospital in Kilkenny with non-life threatening injuries.

Fire services were at the scene for several hours and extinguished the fire at about 4am.

Cathaoirleach of Kilkenny County Council, Peter ‘Chap’ Cleere said: “Frank was a real character. I had many great chats with him especially around the time of the local elections. He was well-respected, well-known and well-liked as are all his family.

“The people of Graiguenamanagh are hurting today. People are shocked and sad. The whole community is devastated. My thoughts and condolences are with his friends and family.”

Technical examinations have been carried out at the scene and Mr Stafford’s body was taken to Waterford University Hospital for a postmortem examination.