THIS WEEK IN 1980: Parachute sergeant's mum had premonition her son had died

A Portsmouth mother's premonition that her soldier son would become a terrorist victim in Northern Ireland came true.

Tuesday, 22nd August 2017, 7:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 12th September 2017, 11:35 am
jpns-19-08-17 retro Aug 2017 Wedding - Sgt Brian Brown and his wife Shirley on their wedding day

Sylvia Hunter, 55, was sitting at home waiting for the policeman who called to tell her that Parachute Sergeant Brian Brown was dead.

Mrs Hunter, of North End, said that after the Warrenpoint killings the previous year when men from his regiment – the 2nd Parachute Regiment – died in a bombing ambush, she knew something was going to happen to him.

Sgt Brown, 29, had served with the regiment for nine years and was half-way through his eighth tour of duty in Ulster when he was killed on patrol near the border at Forkhill in South Armagh.

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He had told his family that would be his last tour of duty in Northern Ireland.

His Portsmouth-born wife Shirley and their children – the third only two months old – were with him in Northern Ireland.

His mother said: ‘I think I must have had a premonition something was wrong. Brian died on Friday and on Saturday I stayed in the house instead of going shopping as I usually do. When the policeman came to tell me my son was dead I was sitting here, waiting.’