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  1. ITV Report

Donna-Marie McGillion remembers the Omagh blast she heard on the radio six and a half weeks later

On 15 August 1998 Donna-Marie Keyes was shopping for shoes a week before her wedding day.

Twenty years on, as one of the worst injured survivors of the Omagh bombing, she remembers the day her life changed forever and the unexpected welcome she received when she finally walked down the aisle.

"I got up that morning and was like 'oh my God I'm going to get married in a week,' and then I remember going into the shoe shop," she told ITV News Correspondent John Irvine.

"After that I have no recollection. I have the sounds and I would still hear the screams," she said.

"Then I remember waking up, being brought back round again, about six and a half weeks later in the Royal Victoria Hospital."

She suffered over 60% burns in the explosion at the Co Tyrone town and was told she had only 20% chance of survival.

Her 21 month-old niece Breda was killed in the blast and Donna-Marie was covered in burns but had no idea what had happened to her.

For six and a half weeks Donna-Marie thought what happened to her "was an accident" but she eventually found out through a news bulletin.

"The radio came on and then I heard all about the bomb and I was like 'oh my God, I know what happened to me now.

"My mum came in and... I couldn't speak so I kind of mouthed it to her 'I know what happened,'" she said.

The County Tyrone town of Omagh was devastated by a car bomb. Credit: ITV News

But the battle was far from over for Donna-Marie, she was given a one in five chance of survival and was told she was going to die four times.

"I was given the last rites on four different occasions. Actually the priest who gave me the last rites came and celebrated at my wedding six months later so that was pretty special."

She added: "So I did beat the odds."

After battling through the recovery process and having several operations, Donna-Marie and her now-husband Garry McGillion married in March 1999 and were greeted at church with applauding crowds.

"It was a really really special day," she said.

Donna-Marie and Garry McGillion married in 1998 after recovering from their injuries. Credit: PA

"It was really surreal when I got out at a chapel, there were loads of people there, I got a big round of applause.

"It was a lovely day for the family, but even that day we still remembered all the people [that died], but that is just something that we are always going to do."

Donna-Marie added: "It would have been very easy to get angry, there were times that I thought, ‘why me’, but I always say I am not going to get angry and I am not going to get bitter because if I do that, then they have won.

"They slightly distorted my life, but they didn’t ruin it."