Stranraer player helps Clutha victims then plays

Firefighter Frank McKeown took his place in the Stranraer side just hours after attending the police helicopter crash at the Clutha Bar in Glasgow which killed eight people.

McKeown: At the scene of the crash until 8am yesterday. Picture: SNS
McKeown: At the scene of the crash until 8am yesterday. Picture: SNS

Clyde 1-1 Stranraer

Scorers: Clyde - McDonald 15; Stranraer - Longworth 42

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McKeown, 27, who is based at Pollok fire station, played against Clyde after being at the scene of the crash until 8am yesterday.

He said: “It was shaping up as a normal shift and then we heard on the news what had happened. A few guys attended and then we made our way there.

“I was there for one o’clock and never got back until eight this morning. It was probably one of my worst experiences, especially with the sensitive nature of what had happened. My thoughts go to the families affected.

“The crews did a magnificent job and not just the fire brigade and the ambulance services. It was probably tougher for the police as their colleagues were involved. It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience but I don’t really want to say what I was involved in doing.”

McKeown, pictured below, opted to play rather than have the day off. “It was tough but it is your job and I came here after an hour’s sleep. What I was involved in does not fully sink in until afterwards. I was able to play football today and that was a bit of a relief but it was tough.

“I had a moment to think to myself how lucky I am. You appreciate playing after last night but the minute’s silence beforehand was hard. You think about what you were involved in and the people you have left there who are still working. Trying to get into the next round of the cup kept me focused.”

Clyde’s left-back
Kieran MacDonald gave them the lead with a thumping header in the first half but Stranraer’s Jamie Longworth levelled matters with a cool finish on the cusp of half time, punishing a short pass-back by Gavin Brown.