|SBS hero killed on holiday
By TOM NEWTON DUNN
AN SBS hero honoured for rescuing a CIA agent from the Taliban has died in a freak hang-gliding accident.
Sgt Paul McGeogh, 41, was using a rented motorised hang-glider while on holiday in Cyprus.
But when the engine cut out it plunged 1,000ft to the ground and into a vineyard. He died instantly.
The extreme sports enthusiast was on the island with his wife and children at the resort of Pissouri near Limassol.
The father of four was dramatically photographed in action, above, while helping to put down a prisoner revolt at an Afghan fortress in November 2001.
Known as “Scruff” to pals, he led his team of seven SBS commandos throughout the epic three-day battle at Qala-i-Jangi fort near Mazar-i-Sharif.
Two CIA officers Dave Dawson and Mike Spann were inside the fort interrogating one of the inmates when a riot broke out. Many of the 600 al-Qaeda and Taliban prisoners had not been searched and were still armed.
After overpowering guards, the crazed mob captured ex-Marine Spann, 32, and killed him.
Braving a wall of bullets, Paul and his men went into the fortress and managed to save holed-up Dawson.
For the extraordinary act, Sgt McGeogh was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honour — America’s top bravery award.
The MoD also gave Sgt McGeogh a Mention in Despatches.
He retired from the SBS last year.
A 22-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of not having a licence to operate a hang-gliding school.
His funeral is on Thursday. Rest In Peace Paul.