Ballymena fire: Heartbroken mother reveals the last words her daughter told her were ‘I love you’


A heartbroken mother has revealed the last words her daughter, 12, told her were ‘I love you’ before she died in a Ballymena house fire.

Brooke Reid McMaster, 12, was trapped and screaming for help as flames ripped through her home on Wednesday evening.

Her devastated mother, Martha McMaster, 38, spoke to Brooke just hours before her death to ask if she wanted to come to her aunty’s house, reported The Sun. 

Brooke told her: ‘I just want to go home, chill and watch Netflix. I love you mum, see you later.’

Brooke Reid McMaster, 12, was trapped and screaming for help as flames ripped through her home in Ballymena, Northern Ireland

Her devastated mother, Martha McMaster (pictured right), 38, spoke to Brooke just hours before her death to ask if she wanted to come to her aunty's house

Her devastated mother, Martha McMaster (pictured right), 38, spoke to Brooke just hours before her death to ask if she wanted to come to her aunty’s house

Martha later received a call from her brother, who screamed down the phone to warn her of the fire. 

As the blaze grew efforts were made to break down the door and try to save the Year 9 Dunclug College pupil – but she tragically died at the scene. 

Martha’s partner Philip ran into the house five times to try to save her before fire crews warned it was too dangerous.

She added: ‘Our neighbours had stopped Philip going in a sixth time. They said if he did the firefighters would be pulling two bodies out.

Efforts were made to break down the door and try and save the Year 9 Dunclug College pupil but she tragically died at the scene

Efforts were made to break down the door and try and save the Year 9 Dunclug College pupil but she tragically died at the scene

A family friend has set up a GoFundMe page to cover funeral expenses and support the McMaster family, who have also lost their home

A family friend has set up a GoFundMe page to cover funeral expenses and support the McMaster family, who have also lost their home

‘She was such a wonderful girl and I loved her more than anything. It’s totally devastating.’   

Martha, who previously lost another child, told the Ballymena Daily: ‘I am totally devastated, I have already buried a child and now I will have to bury another one.’ 

Brooke’s grandfather Billy McMaster added: ‘I am only 59 and I buried my first son and this will be my third grandchild.’    

Emergency services were called to the blazing property in the Staffa Drive area of Ballykeel at around 5.50pm on Wednesday evening. 

A family friend has set up a GoFundMe page to cover funeral expenses and support the McMaster family, who have also lost their home. Pictured, Brooke

A family friend has set up a GoFundMe page to cover funeral expenses and support the McMaster family, who have also lost their home. Pictured, Brooke

Police attended the scene alongside ambulance and fire and rescue services, but paramedics were unable to save her.

A local councillor described the incident as an ‘unspeakable and unimaginable tragedy’ while Dunclug College principal Ruth Wilson said staff and pupils recorded ‘deep sorrow’ at the news.

Meanwhile, a family friend has set up a GoFundMe page to cover funeral expenses and support the McMaster family, who have also lost their home. 

It has raised a total of £7,866 in two days. 

Emergency servies were called to the blazing property in the Staffa Drive area of Ballykeel at around 5.50pm on Wednesday evening

Emergency servies were called to the blazing property in the Staffa Drive area of Ballykeel at around 5.50pm on Wednesday evening

A Vigil for 12-year-old Brooke. The year nine pupil at Dunclug College was described by her headteacher as being a 'beloved' student

A Vigil for 12-year-old Brooke. The year nine pupil at Dunclug College was described by her headteacher as being a ‘beloved’ student

The description reads: ‘I am a mum of three and came to know Martha when she became part of my team, part of a sisterhood of woman nationwide known as Team Sass.

‘It’s no secret that this family have gone through so much and no parent this young should be loosing another one of their beautiful babies I beg you all to dig deep and help raise some pennies so we can support Brookes family in these hard times. 

‘Funeral costs and then some to ensure they can grieve in peace and have no further concerns at this time. The family have lostnot only this gorgeous little lady but their home, belongings, and of course memories of young Brooke too.’ 

Cllr Matthew Armstrong said: ‘My deepest sympathies to the family and everyone involved.

‘It is an unspeakable and unimaginable tragic event and one in an area that has sadly been no stranger to tragedies in last short period of time. 

‘Sometimes in all honesty there are no words to express or even to imagine what the family are going through at the minute. I am truly devastated and heartbroken for them all.’ 

Police attended the scene in the Northern Ireland town alongside ambulance and fire and rescue services

Police attended the scene in the Northern Ireland town alongside ambulance and fire and rescue services

Chief Inspector William Calderwood added: ‘Police received a report of the fire at around 5:50pm. Tragically, the girl died at the scene.

‘A man who was in the house was taken to hospital for treatment.

‘The cause of the fire has not yet been determined and will be subject to investigation, in liaison with the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service.

‘There are no further details at this time.’

The incident marked the second death reported in the Ballykeel area of the town on Wednesday after a man’s body was discovered at a flat in Crebilly Drive, sparking a murder investigation.  

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk