31/Jul/2014 - Last News Update: 05:54

Bertie Acheson's family heartbroken over killing

Category: Northern Ireland

Published: 2nd May 2012 17:00:13

The daughter of a 72-year-old man who died after confronting a burglar at his Coleraine home has spoken of her family's heartbreak.

Bertie Acheson was assaulted by a man who broke into his house in Glenmore Gardens at about 01:30 BST on Monday.

The police said he suffered a heart attack brought on by stress.

His daughter, Sandra Creelman, said her mother was distraught. She said the burglar had "ruined so many lives in the space of half an hour".

Detectives are treating his death as murder.

Mrs Creelman described her father as a "private and unassuming" man who "put everybody before himself".

"How can I ever come to terms with how my father was brutally attacked and killed in his own home?" she said.

"How can I watch my mother's heartbreak, knowing that I can do nothing to make it better?

"You expect to lose your parents as they get older; never in a million years do you expect to lose them like this, never, ever. It's just a nightmare."

During the ordeal, the intruder threatened Mr Acheson's 70-year-old wife, Sheila, before escaping with £375.

Mrs Acheson suffers from mobility problems and her husband was her main carer. The couple had been together for 44 years.

Her daughter said it had been a "terrifying ordeal" for her mother, who was now too afraid to return to her home.

"She is devastated, numb. He (the intruder) has taken everything," she said.

"If he could be here and see what he has done, all for nothing. It was pointless and needless.

"These have been the longest and the hardest days of our lives and there will be many more to come. Right now it feels like the pain will never go away."

Sandra's husband, Keith, said Mrs Acheson's red purse had been taken during the burglary and pointed out this could be "crucial" to finding the intruder.

"Our family is completely distraught," he said. "We don't want this to happen to someone else.

"So please, if anyone knows who this is, or if you find this purse in your bin or take a look in your garden, then please contact the police as soon as you can, so that this won't happen to any other vulnerable, old couple."

BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. Bertie Acheson's family heartbroken over killing [Online] (Updated 2nd May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1426094/Bertie-Achesons-family-heartbroken-over-killing [Accessed 31st Jul 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Ebola: UK border staff 'unprepared' says union leader

    Border, immigration and customs staff feel unprepared to deal with people coming to the UK with possible cases of the Ebola virus, a union leader says.
  • Gossip column: Cazorla, Torres, Hernandez, Lukaku, Vidal

    For a list of confirmed transfers, check out the transfers page.
  • Guardians of the Galaxy's quest to put the fun back into fantasy

    Move over, Iron Man. Get the door, Thor. There's a new team of comic book superheroes coming our way - and this time they've got a raccoon.
  • World War One: HM Factory Gretna's vital munitions role

    They called it the Greatest Factory on Earth.
  • Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo in 3.6bn euros loss

    Portugal's Banco Espirito Santo (BES) has reported a bigger-than-expected loss of 3.6bn euros ($4.8bn; £2.8bn) for the first six months of the year.
  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com