The death of Detective Garda Colm Horkan will leave those of us who have experienced sudden and violent deaths with a sense of helplessness, sadness and dismay.
That sense of helplessness that one man, who was very much a part of the community he served, was needlessly gunned down while performing his duty to protect those of us he served. Sadness that a man in the prime of his life and career, who had given so much of himself, and with more to give, was taken from us in such a violent manner. And dismay that a life can be so easily taken in the matter of seconds, and family and colleagues will have to bear the burden of that loss for a long time to come.
I stood with serving and retired gardaí, and family members, outside my local Garda station to pay homage to Det Gda Horkan with a minute’s silence.
At that moment my thoughts went back to three members of An Garda Síochána whom I had personally known and whose lives were taken in the course of their duties. Their deaths, also in a violent manner, were when trying to preserve the peace and security that we have come to know on our island and far afield.
These Garda members who died were from within our own communities. They are ordinary men and women who have dedicated their lives to serve the public and protect our standards of life.
They have been, were, and are now the frontline through a century of troubled times. They are, for the most, unarmed with few resources and at times totally underfunded and under resourced.
We can only hope that during this period of sadness and mourning we take time to reflect and look again at those who serve us on the frontline with a renewed respect and understanding.
Christy Galligan (retired Garda sergeant)
Letterkenny, Co Donegal
Maybe we should look closer to home on the actions of TDs
In relation to Cormac McQuinn’s piece on how TDs hire members of their family (“Almost one in seven TDs hired family as assistants”, Irish Independent, June 23); while I appreciate what the journalist is saying, this is nothing new. It has been thus for years, and it’s the same across other sectors of Irish society. You could say they are looking after their own, and wouldn’t we do the same ourselves if we got the chance?
Loughrea, Co Galway
Facing up to issues of hygiene to stop the virus in its tracks
We are advised to wash our hands regularly as a precaution against Covid-19.
I believe we should also wash our faces. We are most likely to attract droplets on our faces when we go out, rather than on our hands.
We understand that the virus can be transmitted through our eyes and mouth, then obviously it is also essential to wash the virus from our faces on returning to our homes.
First we must wash our hands and then our faces.
Finding the answer after being left short-handed
I was struggling as usual through Saturday’s crossword (no 4924, June 20) and in particular ‘2 Down – Is this underground worker shorthanded’. Totally blank, then after an hour or so ‘shorthanded’ brought to mind a rhyme a school friend had written in one of her school books: “This book is full of shorthand as full as full can be, It killed poor Isaac Pitman and now its killing me.”
Fifty years, nothing, then that pops into my head.
Finished the crossword on Monday morning (as usual).
Bangor, Co Down
Stay-at-home parents should be rewarded for their sacrifice
I wish to respond to the half-page article by Lorraine Courtney (“We may be on the cusp of universal basic income – but it won’t solve taxing issues”, Irish Independent, June 22).
Apart from a short sentence – “don’t forget about the 38 million hours of unpaid care every week” – I consider the theme of the article way too negative about rewarding “stay-at-home” mums or dads, who have never been recognised in any way by the Irish State for their selfless sacrifice in rearing children at home.
Single parents are recognised (correctly) with payment of a monthly allowance as are many other carers. I urge the Government to consider awarding a special “rear my kids at home allowance” to either a mum or a dad.
The benefits of not having to disturb their sleeping children at dawn to ferry them to a crèche, improves quality of life. This new allowance would contribute greatly to reducing car, bus and rail traffic nationwide.
Mrs M J Ryan
Lisnagry, Co Limerick