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Widow of murdered detective Donohoe retires from force


Caroline Donohoe at the funeral of her husband Adrian (David Conachy)

Caroline Donohoe at the funeral of her husband Adrian (David Conachy)

Caroline Donohoe at the funeral of her husband Adrian (David Conachy)

The widow of murdered hero detective Adrian Donohoe has left the force after two decades as a garda.

Mother-of-two Caroline Donohoe officially retired from the gardai last month, but today is the first time it has been disclosed.

The widow had been on leave from her garda duties since the murder. She  previously worked in the immigration section of Dundalk Garda Station, where her husband was also stationed.

It is understood that Ms Donohoe – who is originally from Kilkee, Co Clare – will devote all her time to bringing up the two children she had with Adrian, a boy and a girl aged 10 and 11.

Caroline and Adrian became a couple shortly after they met in the Garda Training College in 1994.

Sources said that Ms Donohoe remained “completely devastated” over the brutal murder of her beloved husband, who was shot dead by a criminal gang on January 25, 2013.

“Her retirement is a new milestone in her life and she is getting used to not being a serving garda anymore,” a source said.

On one of the rare occasions  that Ms Donohoe has spoken publicly since the savage murder, she paid tribute to her husband as “the best, the whole world”.

Her comments came eight months after his murder, when she accepted an award on his behalf at the 2013 People of the Year Awards.

“Adrian was the best father any child could ever have”, she said.


“There was nobody like Adrian and Adrian was the love of my life and I will miss him every minute of every day as long as I live,” Ms Donohoe said.

She recalled his huge State funeral.

“Coming out of the church and walking behind Adrian, I walked behind my best friend.

“And I was surrounded by my friends and that’s what kept me going,” she said.

A large garda investigation into Adrian’s murder is ongoing and a senior source told

the Herald that the case was

being reviewed on an ongoing basis.

“The same drive that was in the investigation at the start is still here now,” the source said.

Det Donohoe was shot dead as he approached an armed gang that was robbing Lordship Credit Union, near Dundalk, Co Louth.

Investigating officers – gardai assisted by PSNI officers because much of the gang were based in the North – identified the gang responsible within days.

Garda Donohoe was blasted in the head with a shotgun when he confronted the criminals near his home on the Cooley Peninsula.

He had been accompanying cash lifts from the local credit unions on the night that he was shot dead.

The five-man gang are from Crossmaglen, Co Armagh, and its surrounding areas on the border with Co Louth.

A key member of the murder gang is regularly spotted by gardai and is living near where the hero garda was shot dead.