Daughter: mum died in my arms after saving me

25th December 2017:  General view of the scene at Mornington housing development in Lisburn investigation following the death of a woman at a property.
25th December 2017: General view of the scene at Mornington housing development in Lisburn investigation following the death of a woman at a property.

The daughter of the woman stabbed to death in Lisburn has said her mother sacrificed her own life to save her.

The victim, who is believed to have been from Co Down, died following an early morning incident on Christmas Day at a house in Lisburn.

A 19-year-old man was arrested soon afterwards, and at time of writing last night it was understood he was still being questioned.

Police gave few details about the incident, except to say a murder investigation had been launched, and did not name the victim.

In a Facebook post, Charlotte Reat said that it was her mother, Jayne Toal Reat, who had died.

She said: “My mum died saving me, I was stabbed twice in the head once in my face and once to the back of my neck.

“I can still feel her in my arms and hear her screams of pain and see the panic on her face.”

The message thanked everyone who has expressed their support for the family.

The online message then added: “Jayne Toal Reat you died saving my life and I just wish I could trade places with you.

“You are my hero forever and always and I’ll never forget you... I love you my beautiful mummy forever and always.”

Police and ambulance personnel had been called to a house at Mornington Lane in Lisburn shortly after 6am on Christmas Day.

Lisburn councillor Andrew Ewing said this thoughts and prayers were with the families of all those affected by the death.

“I can’t even begin to imagine what the victims’ families must be going through,” the DUP councillor added.

SDLP MLA Pat Catney said local people were in shock at what had happened in a normally quiet cul-de-sac.

“People across Lisburn are in shock this morning,” the Lagan Valley representative said yesterday.

“Instead a family is waking up on Christmas morning to news of the death of a loved one.

“I can’t begin to imagine the pain they’re feeling today.

“My thoughts and prayers are with the woman’s family and friends at this extremely difficult time.”

Mr Catney added: “I would urge anyone with information, however small, about what happened here to bring it forward as soon as possible.”

One local resident was quoted saying to the BBC: “I saw the flashing lights, the ambulances, police cars and the crime scene investigators arrive.

“I’m completely in shock.

“It makes you feel lucky for what you have ... it’s really bad.”

Alliance Party councillor Amanda Grehan said: “This is a relatively new development, made up of people from all walks of life, and is usually very quiet.

“There is a shock among residents in the wider Mornington area, as they have never had to deal with anything like this here before.”

Councillor Grehan also said her thoughts were with the family of the woman who died.

She added: “Christmas Day is one most people spend with their families and is full of joyous moments.

“However, now we have one family plunged into grief and despair.

“I would urge anyone with information on this terrible incident to take it to police immediately.”

Belfast’s Royal Victoria Hospital received casualties from the incident.

It was not clear last night precisely how many people it had admitted, but two are known to have been discharged according to the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust.