Derrylin to host hunger strike commemoration

The 2014 National Hunger Strike Commemoration has been announced to be in Derrylin Co. Fermanagh this year complete with buses to the event.

Diane Woods the niece of local IRA murder victims Thomas and Emily Bullock told the Belfast Telegraph she felt sick at the prospect.

From the Belfast Telegraph:

A gang of up to six masked men carried out the brutal attack on Mr and Mrs Bullock.
They arrived at the isolated farmhouse in Aghalane just outside Derrylin at around 6pm on September 21, 1972. Mrs Woods said her aunt constantly worried about her husband’s safety, often lying on the landing of the house in a sleeping bag to watch for Mr Bullock returning home.
“My aunt always had this awful fear,” she said. “She always used to say if they come to get Tommy it will be over my dead body, and that’s exactly how it happened.
“My uncle was watching the news. They knocked the door and when my aunt answered they blasted her. They then literally stepped over her body and went on into the living room and shot Tommy.
“I can still visualise being in the morgue with my uncle lying with a bullet through his temple.
“When the gang were leaving the area they blew their horns and cheered.”
In the days after the double murder a vile call was made to an abattoir in the area telling them they had two bullocks for them to process. Nobody was ever convicted for the attack.

The News Letter reports that even the funeral courtage was blocked in the village

Michelle Gildernew the local MP welcomed the event and commented:

“The annual commemoration is not only a dignified parade to honour Irish Hungerstrikers but a series of events including lectures, displays and youth events that allow people to remember the sacrifice made by these men.
“The commemoration attracts up to 10,000 people so there is also an economic benefit to the local businesses as many people travel to the area.
“The organising committee is already working with the local community to minimise any disruption during the parade and ensure that the event is successful.
“The Hungerstrike was a pivotal moment in Irish history and it is right and fitting that it has now come to Fermanagh and I would appeal to local people to come out and support the event.”

Presumably the economic benefits will extend to entertainment, no doubt including food.

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