City's life-saving heroes are honoured for their bravery
A young man who caught a baby thrown from the third-floor window of a burning building received a bravery award last night.
Mark Furlong (21) proved to be the ultimate safe pair of hands when Derek Healy threw his three-month-old daughter Mila from the window in the early hours of November 25.
Derek thanked Mark once more at a ceremony at the Mansion House in Dublin last night when Lord Mayor Christy Burke presented him with a scroll acknowledging his life-saving catch.
The building at Gloucester Diamond, off Sean McDermott Street, in the north inner city was filled with smoke when fire broke out.
Mark and his cousin Aaron Furlong were at home nearby when they heard cries for help shortly before 5am.
"We went to the corner and saw the building in flames. I could see a man at the window in the smoke shouting 'Will you catch the baby? Will you catch the baby?'"
When Mark got into position underneath the window, Mr Healy dropped the baby and Mark managed to catch it in his arms.
"I just thanked God I didn't drop her," said Mark last night.
"Mila was in a little sleeping bag. Myself and my girlfriend Charlene were at the window and the smoke was so bad it was choking me. When I dropped Mila, I just knew she would be caught. I can't describe how grateful I feel to Mark.," Derek Healy added.
Derek managed to climb down to safety but Mila's mother Charlene Murphy fell as she tried to escape the flames and fractured her pelvis. Charlene's mother Edel suffered broken legs.
Other neighbours who gave vital help in the rescue of the family also received scrolls, including Christine and John Lyons, Wayne Kearns, Ian Molloy and Aaron Furlong.
Another marvellous deed involving saving the life of an infant was acknowledged at the ceremony when a special scroll was presented to Nikita Hutch (21) from Sheriff Street in Dublin 1.
Nikita was driving out of a car park at the ILAC Centre in Dublin on December 2 when she saw a mother in distress as she held a five-week-old baby boy who had stopped breathing.
"The little baby had turned blue and his nose was bleeding. There was no sign of him breathing so I did CPR for more than 12 minutes until he started to breathe again," Nikita told the Herald.
Lord Mayor Burke said he was delighted to honour the heroes.
"Dublin's inner city has some fantastic young people and Mark and Nikita and the others are a great example," he said.