VISITORS to Donaghadee could have been forgiven for thinking they were seeing double – for in the harbour were two modern lifeboats instead of the usual one.
The RNLI’s Tamar class vessel Victor Freeman, from Portpatrick in Scotland, made the 23 mile crossing to Ireland to give the crew of Donaghadee’s Trent class vessel, Saxon, a chance to offer their best wishes to a lifeboat volunteer who has served 29 years with the charity that saves lives at sea.
Quentin McKie, has been coxswain of the Portpatrick boat for the last four years, but is hanging up his lifejacket after a lifetime of service. The Donaghadee and Portpatrick lifeboat crews regularly work together saving lives in the North Channel which separates Scotland from Ireland.
Donaghadee coxswain Philip McNamara said: “It’s always been a pleasure working with Quentin and we wish him well for the future. There are many people on both sides of the Irish Sea who owe their lives to his courage as a lifeboat man and his professionalism as a mariner.”
The coxswain and crew of the Victor Freeman enjoyed lunch in Donaghadee’s Meadowbank Social Club before catching the tide back home.