17th October – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

 17th October

Sunday 17 October 1971

A British soldier was killed by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) in Belfast. Another soldier died two days after he was mortally wounded.

A Catholic man was shot dead by the British Army in Belfast. It was estimated that approximately 16,000 households were withholding rent and rates for council houses as part of the campaign of civil disobedience organised by the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP). The campaign was in protest against Internment and had begun on 15 August 1971.

Tuesday 17 October 1972

The Ulster Defence Association (UDA) opened fire on the British Army in several areas of Belfast.

Saturday 17 October 1981

Stewart Pringle

Stewart Pringle, then Commandant-General of the Royal Marines, was badly injured when the Irish Republican Army (IRA) exploded a bomb under his car.

Tuesday 17 October 1995

Anthony Lake, then United States National Security Adviser, held a meeting with Patrick Mayhew, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, and Michael Ancram, then Political Development Minister at the Northern Ireland Office (NIO). Patrica Campbell, then a Catholic member of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) who had been a former assistant to James Molyneaux, lodged an employment discrimination case with the Fair Employment Commission (FEC) against the UUP.

Thursday 17 October 1996

David Trimble, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), met with John Major, then British Prime Minister, at Downing Street, London.

Friday 17 October 1997

Parades Commission Announced Marjorie (Mo) Mowlam, then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, gave a speech at the Jordanstown campus of the University of Ulster during which she outlined the remit of the Parades Commission. Despite early speculation it was announced that the new commission would not cover other expressions of cultural identity such as Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) sporting activities. Resident groups and the Loyal Orders criticised various aspects of the Parades Commission in particular the membership of the commission and its powers.

David Ervine, then a spokesperson for the Progressive Unionist Party (PUP), and Garry McMichael, then spokesperson for the Ulster Democratic Party (UDP), began a speaking tour of the United States of America (USA).

Sunday 17 October 1999

A number of homes were evacuated in the Cliftondene Crescent area of north Belfast as part of a security alert. A pipe-bomb was later found and made safe. Lord Grey of Naunton died aged 89. He had been the last British Governor of Northern Ireland and had served in the post from 1968 until direct rule was imposed on 30 March 1972.

Wednesday 17 October 2001

Loyalist paramilitaries exploded a bomb close to where parents and children were returning from the Holy Cross Girls’ Primary School on the Ardoyne Road, north Belfast. The bomb had been placed at the rear of a house on Alliance Avenue and it exploded at 3.10pm (15.10BST) causing extensive damage to the house. No one was injured but the householder, and a number of parents and children, were described as being in “shock”.

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Remembering all innocent victims of the Troubles

Today is the anniversary of the death of the following  people killed as a results of the conflict in Northern Ireland

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.”
Thomas Campbell

To the innocent on the list – Your memory will live  forever

– To  the Paramilitaries  –

There are many things worth living for, a few things worth dying for, but nothing worth killing for.

8 People lost their lives on the 17th  October  between 1971– 1988

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17 October 1971


Graham Cox,   (35) nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died two days after being shot by sniper while travelling in British Army (BA) Armoured Personnel Carrier, Oldpark Road, Belfast.

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17 October 1971


George Hamilton,  (21) nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot by sniper while on British Army (BA) foot patrol, Glenalina Park, Ballymurphy, Belfast.

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17 October 1971


David Thompson,  (38)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot as he stood at the corner of Seaforde Street and Sheriff Street, Short Strand, Belfast.

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17 October 1972
Eleanor Cooke,   (32)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot during street disturbances near to her home, Bracken Street, Shankill, Belfast.

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17 October 1972
John Todd, (23)

Protestant
Status: Ulster Defence Association (UDA),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Also off duty Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) member. Shot during street disturbances, Wilton Street, Shankill, Belfast.

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17 October 1975


John Greer,  (30)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Taxi driver. Shot when he arrived at house to pick up passenger, Cavehill Road, Belfast. Assumed to be a Catholic.

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17 October 1976
Bernard McCarron,  (45)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Found shot and badly beaten, Richmond Street, Shankill, Belfast

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17 October 1988
Norman McKeown,   (39)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by booby trap bomb attached to his car outside his home, Dunleady Park, Dundonald, Belfast. His employer contractor to Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC).

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