Tag Archives: 27th March

Castlerock Killings – 25th March 1993

Castlerock Killings

castrock map.PNG

25th March 1993

The Castlerock killings took place on 25 March 1993 in the village of CastlerockCounty LondonderryNorthern Ireland. Members of the Ulster Defence Association (UDA), a loyalist paramilitary group, shot dead three civilians and a Provisional Irish Republican Army volunteer as they arrived for work. Another was wounded. The men were all Catholics.

The five men were builders and had been renovating houses in the Gortree Park housing estate for some months. As they arrived in their van at Gortree Park, at least two gunmen jumped out of another van and opened fire.

— Disclaimer –

The views and opinions expressed in this post/documentaries  are soley intended to educate and provide background information to those interested in the Troubles of Northern Ireland. They in no way reflect my own opinions and I take no responsibility for any inaccuracies or factual errors.

 Those killed were James McKenna (52), Gerard Dalrymple (58), Noel O’Kane (20) and Provisional IRA volunteer James Kelly (25).

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25 March 1993


James Kelly,   (25)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot during gun attack on van, as he arrived at his workplace, renovating houses, Gortree Park, Castlerock, County Derry.

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25 March 1993
 James McKenna,  (52)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot during gun attack on van, as he arrived at his workplace, renovating houses, Gortree Park, Castlerock, County Derry.

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25 March 1993


Gerard Dalrymple,  (58)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot during gun attack on van, as he arrived at his workplace, renovating houses, Gortree Park, Castlerock, County Derry.

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25 March 1993
Noel O’Kane,  (20)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot during gun attack on van, as he arrived at his workplace, renovating houses, Gortree Park, Castlerock, County Derry.

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castle rock 2.PNG

The gunmen drove off toward Castlerock before doing a U-turn and passing their victims again. The van used by the gunmen was found burnt-out two miles from the attack.

Later in the day, the UDA shot dead a Catholic civilian Damian Walsh and wounded another at Dairy Farm Shopping Centre in Belfast.

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25 March 1993


Damian Walsh,   (17)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot at his workplace, Dairy Farm Shopping Centre, Twinbrook, Belfast.

See: 25th March – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

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The UDA claimed responsibility for the attack using the covername “Ulster Freedom Fighters” (UFF) and said the men were republicans.

 Sinn Féin councillor Patsy Groogan said the men were regularly stopped and harassed by the security forces and that he had:

“no doubt that this behaviour played a part in targeting these men for assassination”.

The weapons were later used by the same gang in carrying out the Halloween Greysteel massacre at the Rising Sun pub on 31 October 1993. It has been claimed that one of the gang was a double agent and protected by RUC Special Branch.

Related image
Torrens Knight

Torrens Knight received eight life sentences for the Greysteel massacre, together with four more for the Castlerock killings. He served seven years in the Maze Prison before paramilitary prisoners were granted a general release under the Belfast Agreement.

 

See:  The Kingsmill Massacre – 5 January 1976

See: 25th March – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

27th March – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

27th March

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Saturday 27 March 1971

The Alliance Party of Northern Ireland (APNI) held its first Annul Conference  in the Ulster Hall in Belfast. The APNI was launched on 21 April 1970.

Sunday 26 March 1972

William Whitelaw, was appointed as the first Secretary of State for Northern Ireland.

Tuesday 27 March 1973

The governing body of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) the Ulster Unionist Council held a meeting to decide its position with regard to the White Paper published by the government on 20th March 1973.

 The council voted by 381 to 231 votes to accept the White Paper. Nevertheless, there remain strong opposition to the proposals even among those who decided to support Brian Faulkner. [Following the vote a number of members of the UUP left to form a new political grouping on 30th March 1973

Thursday 27 March 1975

 Senior members of the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) began a three day ‘conference’ to consider political options for the future. The meeting was held in Hotel Frommer in Holland. A brief note of the discussions that took place was written by ‘independent observers’ (PDF; 439KB).

Monday 27 March 1989

(c) Durham University; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

The 300th anniversary of the ‘Siege of Derry’ was celebrated by the Apprentice Boys of Derry.

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See Siege of Derry

Thursday 27 March 1997

The Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) uncovered a Loyalist arms cache in Carrickfergus, County Antrim.

Loyalist paramilitaries carried out two separate ‘punishment’ shootings on two men in north Belfast.

Members of the Spirit of Drumcree (SOD) group disrupted a meeting of the County Antrim Orange Order Lodge. The meeting had been called to allow Robert McIlroy, then County Grand Master, to explain the compromise that had been reached between the Lodge and the residents of Dunloy. The compromise had been brokered by Mediation Network.

Robert Salters, then Grand Master, criticised Joel Patton, then leader of SOD, for “stirring things up”. Patton called on Salters to resign.

The Northern Ireland Prison Service announced changes to the regime at the Maze Prison. Some leisure facilities were withdrawn and more regular head counts were introduced.

One of the main witnesses in Germany against Roisín McAliskey, then being held in prison awaiting a decision about extradition, denied ever seeing her when shown a photograph of McAliskey on Kontraste Sender Freies Berlin, a German television programme.

Brian Pearson, a former Irish Republican Army (IRA) prisoner, was granted political asylum in the United States of America by a New York immigration court.

Friday 27 March 1998

Cyril Stewart, a former member of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) , was shot dead by Republican paramilitaries [believed to be the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA)] at Dobbin Street in the centre of Armagh.

He was shot dead after he left a local supermarket where he had been shopping with his wife. Stewart had left the RUC a few months prior to his shooting because of ill-health. Seamus Mallon, then Member of Parliament (MP) for Armagh and Newry, described the attack as an act of “absolute savagery”.

Saturday 27 March 1999

The Orange Order held a meeting in Belfast at which it was decided that the Order would hold a single Twelfth of July demonstration at Drumcree, County Armagh, if the dispute over the parade was not resolved.

The meeting was read a statement by Jonathan Powell, then the Prime Minister’s chief of staff, which indicated Tony Blair’s high esteem for the Order and his belief that it could play “and important and constructive part in the future of Northern Ireland

Monday 27 March 2000

Bloody Sunday Inquiry

Edward_Daly_Bloody_Sunday

The Saville Inquiry into the events of Bloody Sunday began public hearings at the Guildhall in Derry. The hearings began with a statement by Christoper Clarke (QC), then counsel to the Inquiry.

See Bloody Sunday

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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.

10  People lost their lives on the 27th  March between 1973– 1998

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27 March 1973


Patrick McCabe   (16)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army Youth Section (IRAF),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot by British Army (BA) sniper from Flax Street British Army (BA) base, while walking along Etna Drive, Ardoyne, Belfast.

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27 March 1973
Andrew Somerville,  (20)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed in land mine attack on British Army (BA) mobile patrol, Ballymacilroy, near Ballygawley, County Tyrone.

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27 March 1979


Gerry Evans,  (24)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
From Northern Ireland. Abducted while walking along road, near Castleblayney, County Monaghan, Republic of Ireland. His remains eventually found by information supplied anonymously, buried in bogland, Carrickrobin, near Dundalk, County Louth, on 15 October 2010.

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27 March 1981
John Smith,  (25)

Protestant
Status: Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Off duty. Shot while on his way to work, Cromac Street, Markets, Belfast.

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27 March 1981


Paul Blake,  (26)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Defence Association (UDA)
Shot from passing car while walking along Berwick Road, Ardoyne, Belfast.

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27 March 1982
Stephen Boyd,  (25)

Protestant
Status: Ulster Defence Association (UDA),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Shot while inside King Richard Tavern, Castlereagh Road, Belfast.

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27 March 1984
David Ross,  (31)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by remote controlled bomb, hidden in parked van, detonated when British Army (BA) civilian-type mini bus passed, near Gransha Hospital, Clooney Road, Derry.

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27 March 1985
Anthony Dacre,   (25)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed by remote controlled bomb, hidden behind door, detonated when British Army (BA) foot patrol passed, Divis Flats, Belfast.

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27 March 1992


Colleen McMurray,   (34)

Protestant
Status: Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed in horizontal mortar attack on Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) armoured patrol car, Merchants Quay, Newry, County Down.

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27 March 1998


Cyril Stewart,  (52)

Protestant
Status: ex-Royal Ulster Constabulary (xRUC),

Killed by: Irish National Liberation Army (INLA)
Shot, outside supermarket, off Dobbin Street Lane, Armagh.

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