Monday 16 January 2017

How Nelson departed from Dublin - and moved in with us

John Daly

Published 08/03/2016 | 02:30

Nelson's Pillar after the explosion, March 1966
Nelson's Pillar after the explosion, March 1966

Horatio Nelson was always getting in the way at our home. In fact, there were pieces of him scattered all over the house - all of them recovered souvenirs from that fateful night, March 8, 1966, when the famous admiral was blown from his perch high above O'Connell Street.

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My brother, who was a chef at the Gresham Hotel at the time, was just coming off the night shift when the bomb exploded, and was among the first on the scene.

On his next visit home, he arrived laden with chunks of Nelson - and for years afterwards, solid fragments of the famous belt and sword doubled as door stops and conversation starters in the Daly household. One of the admiral's famous quotes - about the medals on his uniform - proved apposite: "In honour I gained them, and in honour I will die with them."

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