Tag Archives: William Herron

Tullyvallen Massacre – The Forgotten Massacre

Tullyvallen Massacre – The Forgotten Massacre

1 September 1975

The Tullyvallen massacre took place on 1 September 1975, when Irish republican gunmen attacked an Orange Order meeting hall at Tullyvallen, near Newtownhamilton in County ArmaghNorthern Ireland. The Orange Order is an Ulster Protestant and unionist brotherhood. Five Orangemen were killed and seven wounded in the shooting.

The “South Armagh Republican Action Force” claimed responsibility, saying it was retaliation for a string of attacks on Catholic civilians by Loyalists. It is believed members of the Provisional IRA carried out the attack, despite the organisation being on ceasefire.

Background

On 10 February 1975, the Provisional IRA and British government entered into a truce and restarted negotiations. The IRA agreed to halt attacks on the British security forces, and the security forces mostly ended their raids and searches.

There was a rise in sectarian killings during the truce. Loyalists, fearing they were about to be forsaken by the British government and forced into a united Ireland, increased their attacks on Irish Catholics/nationalists. They hoped to force the IRA to retaliate and thus end the truce.Some IRA units concentrated on tackling the loyalists. The fall-off of regular operations had caused unruliness within the IRA and some members, with or without permission from higher up, engaged in tit-for-tat killings.

On 22 August, loyalists killed three Catholic civilians in a gun and bomb attack on a pub in Armagh. Two days later, loyalists shot dead two Catholic civilians after stopping their car at a fake British Army checkpoint in the Tullyvallen area. Both of these attacks have been linked to the Glenanne gang. On 30 August, loyalists killed two more Catholic civilians in a gun and bomb attack on a pub in Belfast.

THE GLENANNE GANG – WHO ARE THEY? EXCLUSIVE BBC EXPOSE

Orange Hall attack

On the night of 1 September, a group of Orangemen were holding a meeting in their isolated Orange hall in the rural area of Tullyvallen. At about 10pm, two masked gunmen burst into the hall armed with assault rifles and sprayed it with bullets while others stood outside and fired through the windows.

 The Orangemen scrambled for cover. One of them was an off-duty Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) officer. He returned fire with a pistol and believed he hit one of the attackers.  Five of the Orangemen, all Protestant civilians, were killed while seven others were wounded.  Before leaving, the attackers also planted a 2 pound bomb outside the hall, but it failed to detonate.

The victims were John Johnston (80), James McKee (73) and his son William McKee (40), Nevin McConnell (48), and William Herron (68) who died two days later. They all belonged to Tullyvallen Guiding Star Temperance Orange Lodge.

Three of the dead were former members of the Ulster Special Constabulary.

Victims

01 September 1975

James McKee    (70)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
Ronald McKee,   (40)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
John Johnston,  (80)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
Nevin McConnell,   (40)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975

William Herron,  (63)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh. He died 3 September 1975

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Aftermath

A caller to the BBC claimed responsibility for the attack on behalf of the “South Armagh Republican Action Force” or “South Armagh Reaction Force”, saying it was retaliation for “the assassinations of fellow Catholics”. The Irish Times reported on 10 September: “The Provisional IRA has told the British government that dissident members of its organisation were responsible” and “stressed that the shooting did not have the consent of the organisation’s leadership”.

In response to the attack, the Orange Order called for the creation of a legal militia (or “Home Guard”) to deal with republican paramilitaries.

Some of the rifles used in the attack were later used in the Kingsmill massacre in January 1976, when ten Protestant workmen were killed. Like the Tullyvallen massacre, it was claimed by the “South Armagh Reaction Force” (a cover name for IRA operatives in some operations at the time) as retaliation for the killing of Catholics elsewhere.

In November 1977, 22-year-old Cullyhanna man John Anthony McCooey was convicted of driving the gunmen to and from the scene and of IRA membership. He was also convicted of involvement in the killings of UDR soldier Joseph McCullough—chaplain of Tullyvallen Orange lodge—in February 1976, and UDR soldier Robert McConnell in April 1976.

South Armagh – “Bandit Country” (1976)

Main Source : Wikipedia

See also


Major Events in the Troubles

7th April – Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

Key Events & Deaths on this day in Northern Ireland Troubles

7th April

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Friday 7 April 1972

PicMonkey Collage with text.jpg

Three members of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) died in a premature bomb explosion at Bawnmore Park, Greencastle, Belfast.

Saturday 7 April 1973

The Irish Republican Army (IRA) carried out a land-mine attack on a mobile patrol of the British Army and killed two soldiers near Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

A member of the Official Irish Republican Army (OIRA) was shot dead near his home in Armagh city.

Monday 7 April 1975

IRA Truce

Wednesday 7 April 1976

  

Elizabeth & Noleen Herron

Herron, William also died

Three members of a Protestant family were killed by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) when an incendiary bomb caused a fire in the drapery business below the Herron family home.

Friday 7 April 1978

Airey-Neave 2 resized

Airey Neave, then Conservative party spokesperson on Northern Ireland, said that power-sharing no longer represented practical politics.

See Airey Neave- The Assasination of Airey Neave

James Callaghan, then British Prime Minister, held a meeting with Jack Lynch, then Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister), at the European Community summit at Copenhagen.

[The talks helped to ease relationships between the British and Irish governments.]

Tuesday 7 April 1981

Joanne Mathers (29), a Protestant civilian who was acting as a census enumerator, was shot dead in the Gobnascale area of Derry, while she was collecting census returns. Republican paramilitaries were responsible for the killing.

Saturday 7 April 1984

John Hermon, then Chief Constable of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC), denied there was a ‘shoot to kill’ policy being operated by security forces in Northern Ireland. He also said there was no cover-up in relation to events surrounding the killing of two Irish National Liberation Army (INLA) members at a vehicle check-point at Mullacreavie, County Armagh, on 12 December 1982.

 

See 12th December

Hermon did admit that two unarmed RUC officers had entered the Republic of Ireland for ‘observation purposes’ in December 1982. Wednesday 7 April 1993 Gordon Wilson met with representatives of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) to try to persuade them to stop their military campaign. [Gordon Wilson had been injured, and his daughter killed, in the Enniskillen bombing on 8 November 1987. Following the meeting he said that he was saddened by the outcome.]

Thursday 7 April 1994

Protestant Woman Killed by Loyalists

See 6th April

Margaret Wright (31), a Protestant civilian, was badly beaten by a group of men, and then finally shot four times in the head, in a Loyalist band-hall in the Donegal Road area of Belfast.

[She had been invited to the hall on the evening of 6 April 1994 and was then killed by Loyalists who believed that she was a Catholic. There was strong condemnation of the killing in Protestant areas.

Ian Hamiltion (21), a Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) member, was shot dead by the UVF on 12 April 1994 because they claimed he had admitted killing Wright. William Elliott (32), a member of the Red Hand Commando (RHC), a group associated with the UVF, was also shot dead on 28 September 1995 for his alleged part in the killing of Wright.]

Sunday 7 April 1996

easter rising

(Easter Sunday) Republicans held a series of rallies to commemorate the Easter Rising of 1916. Gerry Adams, then President of Sinn Féin (SF), addresses a rally in the Bogside, Derry. The Irish Republican Army (IRA) issued an Easter statement which did not mention a renewed ceasefire.

See Easter Rising

Monday 7 April 1997

A Catholic chapel, Mullavilly in County Armagh, was destroyed by arsonists and a Protestant parish hall was also damaged in Dungiven, County Derry.

Gary Martin Quinn (33) was charged with four murders dating from 1989 and was also charged with being a member of the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a covername used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA).

Tuesday 7 April 1998

The Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) rejected the Mitchell draft settlement paper which had been presented to the parties on 6 April 1998.

Tony Blair, then British Prime Minister, travelled to Northern Ireland to be present during the final stages of the search for agreement. On arriving in Northern Ireland the Prime Minister said, ‘I feel the hand of history upon our shoulder’. Blair held a two hour meeting with David Trimble, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), at Hillsborough Castle, County Down.

Wednesday 7 April 1999

Martin McGuinness, then Vice-President of Sinn Féin (SF), said the Irish Republican Army (IRA) would not accept decommissioning as a precondition to his party’s entry into a power-sharing Executive in Northern Ireland.

Billy Armstrong, then Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) Assembly member, described the Hillsborough Declaration as unacceptable. Sources in the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) were reported as saying that the organisation would not decommission its weapons “to get Sinn Féin into government”.

 

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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.

16  People lost their lives on the 7th April   between 1972– 1985

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07 April 1972


Charles McCrystal,   (17)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in garage, Bawnmore Park, Greencastle, Belfast

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07 April 1972


Samuel Hughes,  (17)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA), Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in garage, Bawnmore Park, Greencastle, Belfast

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07 April 1972


John McErlean,  (17)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died in premature bomb explosion in garage, Bawnmore Park, Greencastle, Belfast

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07 April 1972


Peter Sime,   (22)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Shot by sniper while on British Army (BA) foot patrol, Springfield Road, Belfast

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7 April 1973
Steven Harrison,  (26)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed in land mine attack on British Army (BA) mobile patrol, Tullyogallaghan, near Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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07 April 1973
Terence Brown,   (26)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed in land mine attack on British Army (BA) mobile patrol, Tullyogallaghan, near Newtownhamilton, County Armagh

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07 April 1973


James McGerrigan,  (17)

Catholic
Status: Official Irish Republican Army (OIRA),

Killed by: British Army (BA)
Shot near his home, Windmill Hill, Armagh.

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07 April 1975


Gerard McLaughlin,  (21)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Loyalist group (LOY)
Shot while walking to work along Carnmoney Road North, Glengormley, near Belfast, County Antrim.

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07 April 1975

Hugh McVeigh,  (36)

Protestant
Status: Ulster Defence Association (UDA),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Abducted while delivering furniture somewhere in the Shankill area, Belfast. Found shot, on information supplied to the British authorities, buried in wasteland, Gobbins, Islandmagee, County Antrim, on 1 September 1975. Ulster Defence Association (UDA) / Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) feud.

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07 April 1975


David Douglas, (20)

Protestant
Status: Ulster Defence Association (UDA),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Abducted while delivering furniture somewhere in the Shankill area, Belfast. Found shot, on information supplied to the British authorities, buried in wasteland, Gobbins, Islandmagee, County Antrim, on 1 September 1975. Ulster Defence Association (UDA) / Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) feud.

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07 April 1976
William Herron,   (64)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed during incendiary bomb attack on his drapery shop, The Square, Dromore, County Down. He lived above the shop

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07 April 1976


Elizabeth Herron,  (58)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed during incendiary bomb attack on her drapery shop, The Square, Dromore, County Down. She lived above the shop

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07 April 1976


Noleen Herron,   (26)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Killed during incendiary bomb attack on her parents’ drapery shop, The Square, Dromore, County Down. She lived above the shop.

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07 April 1981


Joanne Mathers,   (29)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Republican group (REP)
Shot while collecting census forms, Anderson Crescent, Gobnascale, Derry.

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07 April 1983


Gerald Jeffrey,   (28)

nfNI
Status: British Army (BA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died eight days after being injured by remote controlled bomb while on British Army (BA) foot patrol, Falls Road, Belfast.

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07 April 1985
Martin Love,  (24)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot while walking along Factory Row, Enniskillen, County Fermanagh

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1st September Deaths & Events in Northern Ireland Troubles

September 1971

Flag_of_the_Ulster_Defence_Association_svg


 A number of Loyalist Defence Associations came together and formed the Ulster Defence Association (UDA).

[The UDA was to quickly become the largest of the Loyalist paramilitary organisations in Northern Ireland. The smaller Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), which was responsible for many sectarian killings, was considered a cover name for the UDA. Indeed the UDA was a legal organisation between 1971 and 11 August 1992 when it was finally proscribed.]

See: UDA History & Background

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Wednesday 1 September 1971
 The Irish Republican Army (IRA) exploded a series of bombs across Northern Ireland injuring a number of people.

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Monday 1 September 1975

Five Protestant civilians died and seven were injured as a result of an attack on an Orange Hall in Newtownhamilton, County Armagh. Responsibility for the attack was claimed by a group called the South Armagh Republican Action force (SARAF) which was considered by many commentators to be a covername for members of the Irish Republican Army (IRA).

Two members of the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) were killed by the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) in the continuing feud between the two Loyalist paramilitary groups. Denis Mullen (36), then a member of the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP), was shot dead at his home near Moy, County Tyrone.

Thomas Taylor (50), a Protestant civilian, was shot dead by Republican paramilitaries at his place of work in Donegall Street, Belfast. Another Protestant civilian was shot dead, in a case of mistaken identity, by the UVF at a scrap metal yard near Glengormley, County Antrim. The intended targets were the Catholic owners of the business.

Tuesday 1 September 1981

First Integrated Secondary School Northern Ireland’s first religiously integrated secondary school, Lagan College, opened. [The integrated school movement was mainly driven by the desire of parents to have schools which would provide the opportunity for greater cross community contact amongst young people.]

Wednesday 1 September 1982

The Irish National Liberation Army (INLA) shot and wounded Billy Dickson, then a Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) member of Belfast City Council. A new Department of Economic Development was formed when the merger took place between the Departments of Commerce and Manpower.

[During September unemployment in Northern Ireland increased to 22.3 per cent of the workforce. ]

September 1991

Sunday 1 September 1991

Visit by USA Delegation A delegation of politicians from the United States of America (USA) arrived in Northern Ireland for a fact-finding visit. Tom Foley, then Democrat Party member and Speaker of the House of Representatives, led the delegation. Foley called on Americans not to provide financial support for NORAID (Irish Northern Aid Committee). Foley also refused to meet representatives of Sinn Féin (SF) until it had renounced the use of violence.

Wednesday 1 September 1993

James Bell (49), a Catholic civilian, was shot dead by the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) at his place of work near to the Newtownards Road in east Belfast. James Peacock (44), a prison officer, was shot dead at his home in Belfast by the UVF.

[The UVF later threatened to kill more prison officers unless there were improvements in conditions for Loyalist prisoners. This threat was withdrawn on 10 September 1993.]

  1. The Unionist controlled Belfast City Council voted to ban Mary Robinson, then President of the Republic of Ireland, from entering any council owned property including the City Hall.

Thursday 1 September 1994

John O’Hanlon (32), a Catholic civilian, was shot dead by the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF), a cover name (pseudonym) used by the Ulster Defence Association (UDA). He was killed outside a friend’s home in Skegoneill Avenue, Skegoneill, north Belfast.

Friday 1 September 1995

An Irish Republican Army (IRA) spokesperson was reported to have said: “There is absolutely no question of any IRA decommissioning at all, either through the back door or the front door”.

[The first act of decommissioning by the IRA happened on 23 October 2001.]

Sunday 1 September 1996

Billy Wright, a leading Loyalist who had been ordered to leave Northern Ireland by the Combined Loyalist Military Command (CLMC) on 28 August 1996, addressed a group of supporters at midnight; the time of the deadline set by the CLMC. A bomb was thrown through the window of the home of Alex Kerr’s parents (Alex Kerr was also under threat from the CLMC but was in police custody at the time of the attack). There were no injuries as a result of the bombing. A series of Orange marches were rerouted in Dunloy, Newry, lower Ormeau Road, Pomeroy, and Strabane.

Monday 1 September 1997

Relatives of three men that were shot dead on 13 January 1990 by undercover soldiers walked out of an inquest in Belfast in protest at the “restricted scope” of the inquiry.

[The three men, Edward Hale (25), John McNeill (43), and Peter Thompson (23), all Catholic civilians, were shot dead during an attempted robbery at Sean Graham’s bookmaker’s shop at the junction of Whiterock Road and Falls Road, Belfast.]

David Trimble, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), held a meeting in Armagh with leaders of the Catholic Church. The meeting was part of a consultation process that the UUP engaged in to determine whether or not to take part in the Stormont talks. Trimble said later that the UUP would not meet Sinn Féin (SF) face-to-face. It was announced that the new head of the Civil Service in Northern Ireland would be John Semple.

Tuesday 1 September 1998

Gerry Adams, then President of Sinn Féin (SF), announced in a statement that: “Sinn Féin believe the violence we have seen must be for all of us now a thing of the past, over, done with and gone.” David Trimble in his role as First Minister Designate, invited Gerry Adams to a round-table meeting.

[These developments came in advance of the arrival of Bill Clinton, then President of the United States of America (USA), on a visit to Northern Ireland on 3 September 1998.]

In an interview the Irish Republican Army (IRA) said that it would not decommission its weapons and claimed that Unionists were using the issue to try to re-negotiate the Good Friday Agreement. The interview was given to ‘An Phoblacht / Republican News’ and was published in full on Thursday 3 September 1998 in the paper. In addition the IRA said that it would do all in its power to help the relatives of people who had disappeared during the conflict. John Bruton, then leader of Fine Gael (FG), said the statement by the IRA on decommissioning made it unthinkable that politicians associated with it could take part in an Executive. The Garda Síochána (the Irish police) established a special unit to investigate malicious calls to the families of two young Buncrana boys killed in the Omagh bombing

Saturday 1 September 2001

The Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) held a meeting of its 120 member executive to decide its response to the ‘Patten Report – Updated Implementation Plan 2001’ that was issued on 17 August 2001. The meeting unanimously supported a motion outlining: “the leader’s determination to resolve satisfactorily with the Secretary of State a number of fundamental issues regarding the Policing Board and the police implementation plan before any further decision is given by the Ulster Unionist Party to nominating members to the Policing Board”. In an interview with the BBC David Ervine, then leader of the Progressive Unionist Party (PUP), suggested that individual members of the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) may have been responsible for the attempted car bomb attack on the Auld Lammas Fair in Ballycastle, County Antrim, on 28 August 2001.


Remembering all innocent victims of the Troubles

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

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.


 14 People lost their lives on the 1st September between 1973 – 1994

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01 September 1973
Anne Marie Petticrew,   (19)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Died nine days after being injured in premature bomb explosion in house, Elaine Street, Stranmillis, Belfast

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01 September 1975

Denis Mullen,   (36)

Catholic
Status: Civilian Political Activist (CivPA),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) member. Shot at his home, Collegeland, near Moy, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
Thomas Taylor,  (50)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: non-specific Republican group (REP)
Found shot at his TV repair shop, Donegall Street, Belfast.

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01 September 1975

James McKee,   (70)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
Ronald McKee,   (40)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
John Johnston,  (80)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975
Nevin McConnell,   (40)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh.

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01 September 1975


William Herron,  (63)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Republican Action Force (RepAF)
Shot during gun attack on Tullyvallen Orange Hall, Newtownhamilton, County Armagh. He died 3 September 1975

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01 September 1975
Leslie Shepherd,  (24)

Protestant
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Shot at scrapyard, Lisnalinchy, near Glengormley, County Antrim. Catholic owners of the scrapyard were the intended targets.

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01 September 1979
Gerry Lennon,  (23)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Shot at his workplace, a shop, Antrim Road, Belfast.

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01 September 1987
Eamon Maguire,  (33)

Catholic
Status: Irish Republican Army (IRA),

Killed by: Irish Republican Army (IRA)
Found shot, Conalig, near Cullaville, County Armagh. Alleged informer.

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01 September 1993


 James Bell,   (49)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Shot at his workplace, Riada Factory, Chadolly Street, off Newtownards

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01 September 1993


James Peacock,   (44)

Protestant
Status: Prison Officer (PO),

Killed by: Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)
Off duty. Shot at his home, Joanmount Park, Ballysillan, Belfast

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01 September 1994


John O’Hanlon,  (32)

Catholic
Status: Civilian (Civ),

Killed by: Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF)
Shot, outside friends home, Skegoneill Avenue, Skegoneill, Belfast

Main source CAIN Web Service


See: UDA History & Background