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‘We will continue to fight for the truth’

Thursday, 12 January 2017

‘We will continue to fight for the truth’ thumbnailPoliticians, family members and friends of the Kingsmills massacre victims gathered at the roadside memorial last Thursday to mark the 41st anniversary of the atrocity

Kingsmills massacre remembered 41 years on

 

THE families and friends of the 10 innocent workmen who were murdered in the Kingsmills massacre held a short service last Thursday morning to mark the 41st anniversary of the atrocity.

Led by Pastor Barrie Halliday, the service took place at the permanent roadside memorial which marks the spot on the Whitecross to Bessbrook road where the Protestant workmen were taken from their work minibus, lined up and shot dead by the IRA.

At last Thursday's service Pastor Halliday praised Coronor, Brian Sherrard for 'bringing great dignity' to the inquest proceedings.

"He gave the family members the opportunity, if they wished, to share some words about their loved ones, this made it all a little more real for all of us," said Pastor Halliday.

"It also brought home to everyone just how evil this plot at Kingsmills truly was.

"We had the 'heroes of Ireland' in the republican movement shoot these innocent men in the back and the middle before they came and finished them off with a bullet to the head.

"If it wasn't for Alan Black surviving we would never have known the full horror of what happened at Kingsmills."

Local MLA Danny Kennedy said it was clear by the large turn-out on Thursday that the families and everyone involved in the campaign for justice will not let this issue rest.

"41 years is a long time but it has not reduced the pain or lessened the memory for those who lost loved ones. The impact on the local community and the families can never be properly measured.

"We will continue to press for the truth to emerge. We will not let what happened here be forgotten or laid to rest but instead we will pursue this however long it takes."

Speaking on behalf of William Irwin MLA, councillor Gareth Wilson said the attack at Kingsmills had been planned for some time.

"I wasn't born when this attack took place but I was fortunate enough to be able to grow up with my brother, father and grandfathers," said Mr Wilson.

"This was a right that the victims at Kingsmills and their families were denied and it is a very solemn thought.

"This memorial stands as a permanent reminder of what happened here and this atrocity won't be forgotten or airbrushed from history."

Spokesperson for victims group FAIR, William Frazer criticised the Irish government for not going far enough in their commitment to share their records of the massacre.

He also vowed that the annual memorial service will continue until the truth is uncovered.

"While we have breath in our bodies we will hold a service here until the truth is told," said Mr Frazer.

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