Noreen Hill Dies

One of the quiet heroes of Northern Ireland died today. Noreen Hill was the widow of Ronnie Hill the headmaster of Enniskillen High School who spent 13 years in a coma following the Remembrance Day bombing. She bought a nursing home in Hollywood where she cared for him until his death in 2000. Here is the Impartial Reporter report from his funeral. As Mrs. Hill said in a previous interview: “I used to have a dream that he was walking about.” I firmly believe that her dream in now a reality in heaven.

Update: There is a very nice and moving tribute to Mrs. Hill in the Newsletter here.


    As a nationalist I can only say that Mrs Hill always came across as a woman who bore her burden and sorrow with great dignity. Enniskillen will continue to be a shameful act which many Republicans acknowledge. May she find peace now with her late husband.


  • Gregory

    I think her example was humbling.

    Reportage of the George Hill Trust residential home on Our Lady’s Mile in Holywood, closure, thereof.

  • joeCanuck

    I can’t believe you censored those comments, Turgon, especially mine.
    Care to explain?

  • NP

    Iam an atheist, but i hope Noreen & Ronnie are at peace together, after the long suffering years.

    Ps. thank you slugger admin for removing early commements.

  • joeCanuck

    I have a similar feeling to your first sentence, NP, even though I’m an atheist too.
    But I don’t believe that tastelessness merits censorship. It’s better to know.

  • Mick Fealty

    I did it Joe. Dread had a legitimate point, but once again an obit blog became a spoiling ground for a fight about something other than the content at the top.

    I cannot tell you how much I feel for any relatives who come across such undignified spats.

  • NP

    joe : my post was totally unrelated to your comment about censorship.
    I think ADmin were possibly trying to keep on track & avoid “whataboutery”.
    Its all about a very brave woman who has nursed her crippled husband for 13 years
    she has now died
    lets not worry about slugger board policy….. eh ?

  • joeCanuck

    Understood, Mick. I appreciate the explanation and, on reflection about the family, I concur.

    OK, NP.

  • ladysnowblood

    Shall we start a campaign against the powers that be at slugger who delete and censor us . We can deliberately write rude and obnoxious comments just to keep them on their toes. If we combine forces and work together we could drive them insane through overwork and sleep deprivation. [no thanks, we’re feeling cranky enough as it is. See this thread at tuppenceworth – mods]

  • joeCanuck

    Mick, I have no problem with you cleaning this up and removing my comments.


  • Seniorhas

    As someone who knew Ronnie Hill for many years both professionally and personally, his tragic and unnecessary death was a great loss to both the local community and to NI in general. We shared a common love of Africa – he had worked in Sierra Leone.His commitment to Education and Methodism was total. This he shared with Noreen. Her devotion and care for Ronnie is an inspiration to us all. Our thoughts are with the family.

  • Gregory

    “I cannot tell you how much I feel for any relatives who come across such undignified spats.”

    You are right.

    The bereaved can’t always hide from these things, which shouldn’t be entered into lightly.

    The Meredith Kercher family for example (at this point in time) have been traumatized again by an Italian police agency which is acting as if it was trained by the Tonton Macoute.

    There has to be a sense of empathy or we may as well be biting & clawing creatures of the forests.

    It is about dignity, and of what’s instinctively appropriate and what isn’t.


  • Pete Baker

    “It is about dignity, and of what’s instinctively appropriate and what isn’t.”

    Actually, it’s not.

    The comment, which caused such outrage, was based on an assumption of the motives for posting on this, rather than the actual content of the post.

    The response should have been a challenge on that assumption, rather than the call for censorship.

    That said, once that call was invoked, moderators have a difficult choice to make between intervening or letting the controversy play out.

  • joeCanuck

    Good point Pete.
    Hard decision, as you say, but once made, move on.

  • Gregory

    Well, I gave up telepathy a while ago.

    I wasn’t any good at it. I assumed the motive for posting was that a few people would have known Ms Hill or her family.

    I sometimes think about the Afghan wedding parties that got splsttered by not so clever smart-bombs and pilled-up pilots,

    and reflect upon how it is so muuch never ever going to be a blip in the news again. People are left to get on with what’s left.

    I’ve looked after somebody as they died, it was (for me) a balance of resentment, and then when they went, a feeling of loss.

    I then had boo koo of time in which not to feel resentful. One of those things.


  • CincinnatDave

    Noreen Hill was a women of immense character who walked a difficult road with remarkable dignity, assured faith & daily devotion to her beloved husband Ronnie.

    Her legacy of love will not be forgotten, reflecting the love of her Lord & Saviour for generations to come.

    Unfortunately she was one of many & most will never be known apart from their nearest & dearest who watched them walk their road of sorrow & pain. Such is the legacy of green nationalism & orange nationalism on our land.


  • McGrath

    I think the lesson here is one of devotion and love. That and maybe if some of the same had been present in the hearts of those who caused Mrs Hill her trouble, it never would have occurred.

  • slug

    Noreen Hill’s love and devotion to her husband, her selfless care, has been and will continue to be an inspiration to me for the rest of my life.

  • Jo

    I recall the BBC showing a Spotlight (or the like) special on Mr and Mrs Hill in which the final scene was her talking gently to him and holding his hand as he lay in a coma.

    Possibly the most touching scene I have ever seen on TV.

  • Moochin Photoman

    I for one am glad that the shit stirring comment posted had been moderated. It had no place here.

    I hope that the Hill’s have found peace together

  • fair_deal

    My sympathies to the Hill family

  • .

    May God rest them both, united in Heaven.

    A womans who’s life in quite dignity and goodness offered us the most sobering contrast to those in our society who loudly proclaim themselves the champions of justice, and indeed shamelessly forced their arbitration upon a meek and innocent people.

  • Gréagóir O’ Frainclín

    Very sad, the plight of the Hill family (not forgetting the Wilson family as well) and all those affected by the savage act of the Enniskillen bombing.

    It was another shameful day for Ireland.

  • senseandsensibility

    This is a prime example of how the aftermath of an unnecessary atrocity still remains with this year being the 21st anniversary.

    The “people” who caused the bomb are nothing but cowardly scum and one day they will answer for what they did.

    Mrs Hill is a prime example of how people were and are still suffering at the hands of the republican terrorists and how that her life was unable to move own, facing the aftermath on a daily basis for 13 years.

    Although the IRA have surrendered their arms, they still effect people on both a psychological and physical level.

    She was an inspiration to everyone!

  • T.Ruth

    Love never dies and never ends. He was a good man and she was a great and good lady.