Claudy remembrance service has ‘message of hope’

Family members and survivors at an event marking the 40th anniversary of the Claudy attack in 2012
Family members and survivors at an event marking the 40th anniversary of the Claudy attack in 2012

A remembrance service tonight marking the 45th anniversary of the Claudy bombings is a chance for the entire community to show solidarity with all those affected by the terror attack, a victims’ group has said.

Nine people died in three separate bombs on July 31, 1972. No-one has ever been convicted and no organisation has ever admitted responsibility.

Kenny Donaldson, director of services at South East Fermanagh Foundation (SEFF) said the open-air, cross-community event had a dual purpose.

“It is about remembering and also giving thanks for lives well lived, even those of the youngest victims, just eight and 16 years,” he added.

“Tonight’s 45th anniversary service will carry a message of hope and renewal and will recognise the resilience of those who were left devastated by the bombs.”

Mr Donaldson said SEFF has worked with the main churches in the area and many of those directly impacted by the Claudy bombs in a bid to develop a programme which “honours the memory and legacy of those gone before us”.

He added: “We encourage the full community to come together to remember nine innocents whose lives were stolen through terrorism.

“The nine innocents murdered were parents and grandparents, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles.

“These individuals were wholly innocent as were the many who were injured physically and psychologically. Terrorism came uninvited to Claudy on July 31, 1972 and it ravaged so many lives.

“Those families and individuals deserve to see the full community show solidarity with them – religion, nationality, political differentiation should play no part. Tonight is about remembering innocence, when those bombs were detonated, there was no targeting of one denomination, the bombs were an sttack on the full community.”