Charity climb to take place in memory of Armagh firefighter

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Gary Hamilton - Facebook photo from 'Slieve Donard Charity Walk In Memory Of Gary Hamilton'

by Gráinne Connolly

Family and friends of an Armagh firefighter who was killed in a collision last year are climbing Slieve Donard later in his memory. 

Gary Hamilton died, after the Yamaha motorbike he was riding was involved in a collision on the Castlewellan Road, outside Banbridge in July 2018. 

The 27-year-old was a full time Firefighter in Portadown and retained in Portadown.

Gary was also a third generation firefighter, having followed in his father Brian and grandfather Benny's footsteps into the service.

According to his family, Gary loved mountain walking and climbed Slieve Donard on several occasions. 

Now, over 100 people are expected are expected to Climb Slieve Donard, while raising money for charity.

The funds will be shared out between the Air Ambulance Northern Ireland, The Fire Fighters Charity and Anam Cara, which supports bereaved parents and siblings.

A memorial plaque has also been created for Gary and is being place at the top of the mountain.

(Below - Sarah Creighton, Head of Design in Armalite Ltd. presenting Gary's sister, Claire Hamilton with a plaque in his memory)

Last year, Gary's colleagues at the NIFRS also planted a memorial tree.

The Air Ambulance will be in attendance today and the Red Cross will be providing tea, coffee and snacks from their FEIS mobile all day.

Meanwhile Gary’s colleagues in the Fire Service are planning to raise funds for the three charities with a car wash in the Shambles Yard in May and a flag day in the city centre in June.

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