Ballymurphy Massacre victims remembered in Christmas vigil

Ballymurphy Massacre victims remembered in Christmas vigil

Families of the Ballymurphy Massacre on their candlelit parade through the area

A CROWD of around a hundred people joined a candlelight vigil and paraded through Ballymurphy in west Belfast on Sunday evening with the families of the 11 people killed by British paratroopers in what has become known as ‘The Ballymurphy Massacre’.

The unarmed civilians (including a mother of 8 and a Catholic priest) were among those killed when British troops went on a killing spree in the 72 hours after the introduction of internment without charge or trial by the Unionist Party Government on 9 August 1971.

Sunday’s march and vigil made its way from Corpus Christi Church in Springhill to the Memorial Garden at the Springfield Road where the rally was addressed by a number of speakers,

Danielle Shepard, whose grandmother Joan Connolly was one of those shot dead by the British Army, outlined the success the campaign has achieved during a year which saw Taoiseach Enda Kenny visit the area and an all-party motion, instigated by Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, supporting the families’ quest for justice was passed by the Dáil.

Families of people killed in the McGurk’s Bar boming in 1971 and representatives of people killed in the Springhill Massacre also attended in a show of support and solidarity.

Ballymurphy Xmas vigil

  • Janet Donnelly whose father Joseph Murphy was one of those killed puts a star with her father’s photo on it on the Christmas tree placed in in the area’s memorial garden