Dáithí Ó Sé has found out that life is not just a bunch of Roses after he was arrested by the country’s youngest garda — for not eating his broccoli.

He and fellow Today Show presenter Maura Derrane welcomed Monaghan native Ceejay McArdle, 3, and his mother Susan, to the set in Cork to be the programme’s “Hero of the Week”.

Ceejay was diagnosed with leukaemia at the age of two and is undergoing treatment at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda.

Susan explained that the family had a strong connection with Casteblaney Garda Station. Ceejay and his grandfather would often sit on a wall watching patrol cars going to and from the station. The officers there got in touch with headquarters to tell them about the young boy’s love of the gardaí and about his illness.

To help him through his chemotherapy, an exemption was sought through the Garda Community Relations Bureau to make him the youngest member of the force and, last September Ceejay’s wish to become an officer became reality when he visited Garda headquarters with his parents Susan and Marcus, as an official Garda sergeant.

He was given a customised Garda uniform — which he proudly wore on yesterday’s programme — and his first duty was to conduct the Garda Band. He also received the Garda bravery medal engraved with “Our Hero — Ceejay McArdle”.

He regularly receives goodwill messages from gardaí, especially during his hospital stays, and messages from forces around the world, including the NYPD.

Ceejay had already collared a speedy motorist in March, and during yesterday’s TV broadcast, he got to make his second arrest. He received intelligence that Dáithí Ó Sé had not been eating his greens, and swiftly slapped the cuffs on the Kerryman.

While in Cork, the family were honorary guests at Anglesea St Garda Station, Haulbowline Naval base, and Fota Island.


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