Tuesday 26 September 2017

Tears for the victims of Enniskillen 25 years on

Anna Maguire

"IN loving memory of . . . my dear father and friend," Stephen Gault wrote on a note slipped into a remembrance wreath.

Samuel 'Sammy' Gault was one of 11 people killed in the 1987 Remembrance Day bomb in his hometown of Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh.

Ex-headmaster Ronnie Hill died 13 years after he was injured in the attack.

And during a remembrance service yesterday, survivors and relatives of the victims laid wreaths at the cenotaph where the IRA bomb exploded 25 years ago.

Among them was First Minister Peter Robinson, who said he wanted justice for families who lost loved ones or sustained injuries.

He added: "People are telling us that they are keen to have reconciliation in Northern Ireland; that they want people to have the truth. Let those people who want the truth speak the truth."

No one has ever been convicted in relation to the bombing.

Daphne Stephenson, who was buried under rubble when the bomb went off, echoed other survivors this week when she called on Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness to tell what he knows about the explosion.

She said: "We need to know what Martin McGuinness knows about this."

Politicians from the main political parties -- apart from Sinn Fein -- attended the event, alongside religious and military representatives.

A minute's silence was held at 10:43am to mark the moment when the bomb went off.

Three married couples, a reserve police officer and several pensioners were among the victims.

The names of those who died were read out as a flautist played 'Abide with Me'.

Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Theresa Villiers, also laid a wreath.

The last person to leave a tribute was Jim Dixon -- a survivor who sustained horrific injuries.

The 76-year-old has undergone 26 operations on his head over the last 25 years.

Leaning on a walking stick, he laid a bouquet of lilies.

He then took off his hat and bowed his head for several moments, before walking away hand-in-hand with his wife, Anna.

Irish Independent

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