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Saturday 30 April 2016

Hero granddad stabbed to death in row over a barking dog

Gardai renew appeal for information this evening in the murder of Michael Gannon (55)

Published 15/11/2013 | 14:11

Michael Gannon, who was stabbed at his daughter's house in Skerries
Michael Gannon, who was stabbed at his daughter's house in Skerries
Gardai remove the body of stabbing victim, grandfather Michael Gannon, from the house in Skerries, Co Dublin
The scene of the Fatal Stabbing at 36 Mourne Park
The area which has been secured by gardai in Skerries
Gardai at the scene of the fatal stabbing at Skerries, last night.
Gardai at the scene of the Fatal Stabbing at 36 Mourne Park in Skerries
Residents at the scene of the fatal stabbing at Skerries, last night.
Local sources say Mr Gannon was earlier involved in a verbal row with another man.
It is understood that he answered the door and was attacked in the home of his daughter.
One relative who lives nearby said that they had been alerted to the stabbing by friends.
A family member pictured with a Garda at the scene of the fatal stabbing at Skerries, last night.
"We're just in shock that this has happened and we're trying to take it all in, " a family member said.
State Pathologist, Marie Cassiday with Gardai at the scene.

Gardai have tonight renewed an appeal for information in the murder of a Dublin grandfather, who was stabbed to death after a row over a barking dog, it is believed.

Michael Gannon (55) was minding his two grandchildren, aged six and 12, at their home in Skerries when he was attacked and killed.

A 29-year-old man was arrested at a nearby house and remains in garda custody today.

Detectives believe the victim was attacked at the home of his daughter Jade, (pictured left) in Mourne Park, Skerries after a row over the family dog, a Dalmatian, which was barking loudly.

Mr Gannon’s devastated partner Nicola Lee (42) today told the Herald: “I don't know what happened. He rang me an hour before he died, he said he was on his way home.

“I'm with him 14 years. He was a good man, a good father, and a good partner.”

The devastated partner of Michael Gannon (55) said she wants answers as to why he was murdered at his daughter's home in Skerries last night where he was minding his grandchildren.

Ms Lee (42) said the knife victim had rang her an hour before he was attacked to say he would be home soon.

The Herald can reveal that this is the second tragedy for the Gannon family after Daniel O'Haire – a nephew of Michael Gannon – died last year.

Mr O'Haire (31) had been confined to a wheelchair for almost a decade after he was stabbed in the neck in 2003.

Gardai are investigating whether the Skerries murder is linked to an alleged assault at a party last week which led to a rise in tensions between Mr Gannon and his suspected assailant.

A man in his late 20s was arrested by gardai at a nearby house after the alarm was raised.

Investigating officers also recovered a knife at the house where the suspect was arrested. He remains in custody today.

Gardai believe the deceased was attacked at the home of his daughter, Jade, in Mourne Park, Skerries after a Dalmatian dog – belonging to the family – was barking loudly at the home.

The grandchildren – aged six and 12 – did not witness the attack.

Heartbroken Nicola Lee (42) spoke to the Herald less than 24 hours after she got the awful news about her partner Michael Gannon. “What can I say? I don't know what happened,” she said.

“I just got a phone call and we went out to Skerries. They (gardai) have no information. But I know the policeman will be up today at 11 o'clock to make a statement,” Ms Lee added.

She had been expecting Michael home when she got a call to say he had been killed.

“He rang me an hour before he died, he said he was on his way home,” she revealed.

When Nicola got to the scene of the attack, Michael's body was still there but she was not allowed to see him.

“I'm with him 14 years,” she told the Herald.

“How can I explain about Mick?

“He was a good man, a good father, a good partner. You can't describe him. He always gave to me unconditional love always. He always said that to me. Always, no matter what.”

Nicola received a call yesterday from a friend of Michael's daughter who gave her the terrible news.

“It was from Jade's friend that I know, she's the one that rang me and told me.

“For a minute I thought ... my mind went blank, I just thought no, that's a joke.

“But she said I had to go out and find out for myself.”

Nicola, who has a son from a previous relationship, said Michael was a professional roofer.

She said she hasn't been able to get any information yet on yesterday's incident.

“I'm trying to get it. Why (he was stabbed), I don't know,” she told the Herald.

One Skerries resident said: “My mam rang me and said that the kids are after coming down. As far as I know he [Mr Gannon] told his granddaughter to go and get help.

“She ran to my mother's to get help.

“The first person to come on the scene was my mother and she couldn't get a pulse.

“The two kids don't understand what's going on but I'm sure their mam will sit them down and explain everything.”

“It's a shock for most people around here.”

Investigations are continuing.

By Cormac Murphy and Ken Foy

Online Editors

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