Saville Inquiry: Man gave kiss of life to father of six

A man recounted today how he gave the kiss of life to a father of six as he lay dying in the chaos of Bloody Sunday.

A man recounted today how he gave the kiss of life to a father of six as he lay dying in the chaos of Bloody Sunday.

Francis Duddy told the new Inquiry into the shooting he came across the fatally-wounded Patrick Doherty as he fled the car park of the Rossville Flats where he had seen the injured Peggy Deery and Jack Duddy and witnessed his friend Michael Bridge shot.

Mr Bridge and Mrs Deery survived the injuries they suffered in Londonderry on January 30 1972 but 13 other men, including Mr Doherty and Mr Duddy who was unrelated to the witness were killed that day when Paratroopers opened fire following a civil rights demonstration.

In his written statement to the Tribunal, made public as he entered the witness box, he ran through a gap between the flats to find Mr Doherty, 31, on the other side.

He stated: ‘‘He looked to me like he was taking his last breath and I realised that he had been shot.

‘‘I went over to him and gave him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and I remember rolling him over and seeing a bullet hole in his back, in the upper lung area.’’

Mr Duddy said Mr Doherty must have been shot where he lay by a bullet ricocheting off a wall of the flats.

He stated: ‘‘I remember searching his pockets and he had some rubber bullets in his pockets and a card with his name on it. I remember giving that card to his wife a couple of days later.’’

He added later: ‘‘I then remember Paddy Doherty taking his last gasp of breath and I cannot remember if I could feel a pulse in his neck or not. I think he then died but other people arrived to help.’’

Barrister Michael Topolski, acting for the family of Mr Doherty, later thanked Mr Duddy for his efforts on behalf of his clients.

Earlier he claimed he was standing beside Michael Bridge when he was shot, hysterically confronting a soldier following the shooting of Mr Duddy, who was then being tended by Fr Edward Daly, later to become Bishop of Derry.

A soldier fired shots towards the party around the dying teenager, infuriating Mr Bridge, who turned to the soldier and said: ‘‘That’s a priest you’re shooting at,’’ Mr Duddy claimed.

He added: ‘‘The soldier said ‘If you don’t move back, I’ll shoot you’. Mickey Bridge replied ‘Well shoot me then’, and the soldier did.

‘‘Mickey Bridge was shot in his leg. I remember he turned to me and said ‘The bastard’s shot me’.’’

Mr Duddy was testifying in the Guildhall in Derry on day 89 of the Inquiry, chaired by Lord Saville of Newdigate.

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