The family of the late Det Garda Colm Horkan have said “life will never be the same” as they remembered him as a “kind, thoughtful and a selflessly loyal gentleman” on the first anniversary of his death.
In a statement they said the family and friends of Mr Horkan lost a “dear friend” last year when he was “murdered in the most brutal way that anyone can imagine”.
Garda Horkan (49) was shot dead in the town of Castlerea, Co Roscommon when he intervened in an incident unfolding close to the town’s Garda station.
The family described him as a “proud, popular, respected member of An Garda Siochana who loved his job and wore the uniform with great pride while serving the community for over 25 years”.
They added that his “infectious smile would brighten up any occasion and leave a lasting impression in any room or place”.
“He was kind, thoughtful and a selflessly loyal gentleman to all he encountered both on a personal and professional level,” the family said.
“Colm was one of a kind and on that night of the 17th into the morning of the 18th of June Colm’s life was ended long before his time and sadly we never got the opportunity to say goodbye and to tell him how much we dearly loved him.
“Life will never be the same without Colm.”
The Garda Commissioner paid tribute to Garda Horkan for his “bravery and selflessness” on the first anniversary of his death.
Drew Harris said Garda Horkan was the epitome of what every Garda should aspire to be and that he died while protecting the community he served.
He said: “Today is a very sad and difficult day for Colm’s family and friends, his colleagues, the local community, and An Garda Siochana.
“But as well as sadness there is great pride.
“Great pride in Colm as a person who was loved and respected by so many people.
“Great pride in Colm’s community spirit and desire to help and support others.
“Great pride in Colm’s 24 years of dedicated service to An Garda Siochana and the State.
“Great pride in Colm’s bravery and selflessness to protect the lives of the people he served.
“Colm was the epitome of what all of us in An Garda Siochana should aspire to be – professional, hard-working, supportive, community-focused, and brave. Colm will never be forgotten.”