Page last updated at 08:39 GMT, Saturday, 14 June 2008 09:39 UK

MBE honour for soccer star Healy

David Healy
David Healy has been awarded an MBE

Northern Ireland striker David Healy has been appointed an MBE for services to football and the community in the Queen's Birthday Honours list.

Healy, who has scored 34 times for his country, said the recognition was one of his proudest moments.

"It's an unbelievable honour," the 28-year-old Killyleagh born striker said.

"Goal-scoring records are there to be broken but when you are given something like the MBE you are always going to have it."

His tally of 13 goals in the 2008 UEFA European Championship qualifying campaign made him the highest scorer in the competition's history.

The striker, who is currently hosting a soccer school on behalf of the Ulster Scots Agency in Cookstown, said he had so many people to thank for the award.

"It's a great honour not only for myself but for my mum and dad at home in Killyleagh in Northern Ireland and also my wife and two kids in England," he said.

Dozens of other people from across Northern Ireland society have also been named in the birthday list.

Dr Michael Paterson was awarded an OBE for services to healthcare in Northern Ireland.

William Junkin, the deputy director of public prosecutions for Northern Ireland, and Stephen Quinn, permanent secretary at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, were both awarded CBs.

CBEs are being given to Denis Rooney, chairman of the International Fund for Ireland, and Peter David Smith QC, chairman of the Life Sentence Review Commissioners.

Community work

The Duchess of Alexandra Abercorn was also honoured with an OBE for her community work.

Five current or former police officers have also been rewarded.

Reserve Constable Tommie Linton, Ballymoney, and recently retired Acting Sergeant Richard Walker were both given MBEs.

The Queen's Police Medal is being awarded to three officers: Inspector Noel Rogan, Inspector Andrew Galbraith and another officer who wanted to remain anonymous.

First Minister Peter Robinson passed on his congratulations to all those in Northern Ireland who received accolades.

"The people who have been honoured by Her Majesty The Queen today have all shown a determination to make a difference to the society in which they live," he said.

"It is fitting that their outstanding service, often at considerable personal expense, has been recognised today with the award of an honour."



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