Remembering Óglach Robert Carr, Newry Brigade – Irish Republican Army (IRA), who died on this day 1st April 1980.

Óglach Robert Carr, Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA), died on this day 1st April 1980.

Robert Manus Carr (commonly known as Bob) was born on 7th April 1959 in Quay St, Newry. His parents, Noel and Josie, lived in the ÓNeill Avenue area and they had one other child, Mary.

In the mid 70s Bob Joined a local unit of the IRA determined to fight for his country’s freedom.

In March 1980, Bob was critically injured in a premature explosion at the Customs Post on the Dublin Road. He recieved terrible burns to his body from which he never recovered. He died on the 1st April, six days before his 21st Birthday.

News of his death came as a great shock to his family and friends. His family treasure his memories and his comrades remember him with pride.

With many thanks to: Clan na Gael.

Oglach Thomas McElwee 30/11/1957 – 8/8/1981 Died after 63 days on Hunger-Strike RIP

1097014_149997905206417_862465893_o

Belfast Nga

Thomas Mc Ilwee died today 32 years ago, he was a young man of 23 years.

Thomas McElwee

Thomas McElwee, the fifth of twelve children, was born on November 30th, 1957, into the small, whitewashed home built by his father, along the Tamlaghtduff Road in the parish of Bellaghy.Jim and Alice McElwee married in 1950 and had twelve children, Kathleen, Mary, Bernadette, Annie, Enda, Thomas, Benedict, Joseph, Nora, Pauline, Majella and the youngest James.

Tom McElwee went to St Mary’s primary in Bellaghy, and then to Clady intermediate, three miles away.Thomas got on pretty well at school. From he was eleven Thomas had an intense interest in working with cars and all types of machinery.

As he grew older, his fascination for engines grew stronger. He got his driving licence as soon as he was old enough, and got his own car. He used to travel all over the place to watch stock-car racing.

Thomas joined Fianna Eireann when he was only 14, and subsequently joined the independent unit led by his cousin, Francis Hughes before it was recruited in its entirety, after a period of time, into the IRA.The following few years, before Thomas’ capture in October ‘76, were active ones in the South Derry area.

He had been arrested on a couple of occasions but on October 9th 1976, Kathleen answered the phone, to be told that both their brothers Thomas and Benedict were in the Wavery hospital in Ballymena following a premature bomb explosion in a car in the town, shortly beforehand.In the explosion, Thomas lost his right eye, while two other Bellaghy men were also injured: Colm Scullion losing several toes and Sean McPeake, losing a leg.Benedict McElwee, fortunately, suffered only from shock and superficial burns.

Following the explosion, several other republicans in the town were arrested, later to be charged. These included Dolores O’Neill, from Portglenone, Thomas’ girlfriend, and Ann Bateson, from Toomebridge, both of whom joined the protest in Armagh women’s jail.

Thomas was transferred from the Ballymena hospital to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast for emergency surgery to save his remaining eye. It was three weeks, however, before he was able to see at all.One week before Christmas, he and Benedict were charged and sent to Crumlin Road jail.

At their subsequent trial in September 1977, having spent over eight months on remand in Crumlin Road, Thomas was convicted not only of possession of explosives but also for the killing of a woman who accidentally died in a bomb attack elsewhere in Ballymena that day and with which other republicans were also charged.That ‘murder’ conviction was, on appeal, reduced to 20 years for manslaughterand Thomas returned to the blanket protest he had joined immediately after his trial, in the H-Blocks of Long Kesh.

The McElwee family weren’t surprised last December when they discovered that both Thomas and Benedict had joined the thirty strong hunger-strike, as Sean McKenna neared death.

Thomas McElwee died at 11.30am on Saturday, August 8th. THOMAS McELWEE Aged 23 from South Derry. Commenced hunger-strike June 8th, died August 8th after 63 days.

Mary Queen of the Gael, intercede for the souls of all our Patriot Dead. May their souls, and the souls of all the faithful departed, in the mercy of God rest in peace. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families, comrades and friends of Patriot Dead at this time.

Mary Banríon na nGael, intercede do na anamacha na ár dtírghráthóirí léir Dead. Bealtaine a n-anamacha, agus an anamacha de na departed dílis, i an trócaire Dé chuid eile i síochána. Is iad ár smaointe agus paidreacha leis na teaghlaigh, chomrádaithe agus do chairde de Tírghrá ag

BRIEGE MEEHAN GIVEN SUSPENDED PRISON SENTENCE !

Ex-Shame Fein councillor admitted child cruelty.

A DEFIANT Bridge Meehan left court with a suspended jail term yesterday for shocking cruelty to her 10-year-old stepdaughter. The former Shame Fein councillor, who knocked the young child unconscious and forced her to sleep in a wet bed, was allowed to walk free on the basis of her age, guilty pleas and low risk to the public.

ABUSE: Above Left, former Sinn Fein councillor leaves Belfast Crown Court yesterday after she was given a suspended sentente for child cruelty and assault against her stepdaughter Mary. Above left, Martin Meehan. Above right, Kevin Meehan speaks outside Belfast Crown Court yesterday on behalf of his sister Mary.
ABUSE: Above Left, former Sinn Fein councillor leaves Belfast Crown Court yesterday after she was given a suspended sentente for child cruelty and assault against her stepdaughter Mary. Above left, Martin Meehan. Above right, Kevin Meehan speaks outside Belfast Crown Court yesterday on behalf of his sister Mary.

The 66-year-old had admitted a charge of cruelty and two assaults against Mary Meehan more than 30 years ago while her father, North Belfast IRA chief Martin Meehan, was in prison. The former Newtownabbey councillor originally also faced seven charges of sexually abusing her stepdaughter but they were not proceeded with and were “left on the books”. Belfast Crown Court heard that at the time of the offences between July 1979 and October the following year, an eight-month pregnant Meehan had been left to look after the IRA leader’s three children. Judge Gordon Kerr told Meehan that given her clear record, the “circumstances in which she found herself” and the time taken over the case, “considerable discounts” in her sentence were proper. Suspending the nine-month jail term for two years, the judge said : “The defendant is 66 years of age. The offences were over 30 years ago. There is no evidence she presents any danger to children or anyone else. “There is a low risk of her offending. I do not consider it necessary that she should serve these sentences immediately and think it is proper to suspend them.”

The judge had earlier said that while a remorseful Meehan had “expressed shame at her loss of control”, reports indicated that she “has no empathy or emotional concern” for Mary and the position she found her self in as a youngster, with one parent dead and the other missing. The prosecution proceeded on the basis of an agreed set of facts about her ill-treatment and neglect of Mary and the assaults on her. The first charge of assault related to an incident when Mary was tidying up, but apparently not quickly enough for Meehan, who hit her over the head with a bag containing a glass bottle and knocked her unconscious. Her wound later required stiches. The second assault referred to the youngster being hit by a brush or a shoe which had been thrown at her. The prosecution also told the court how Mary suffered from instances of bed wetting but that her stepmother “forced her to sleep on the wet sheets”. On  another ooccasion, after being accused of smoking by Meehan, the 10-year-old was forced to smoke cigarettes by way of punishment or deterrence. Mary was eventually rescued by social services who placed her into care in October 1980. A medical examination at the time revealed 20 bruises sustained while being looked after by Meehan.

The offences were committed while she was the girlfriend of Martin Meehan, who was on remand in prison on IRA kidnapping charges for which he was eventually jailed for 12 years. Mr Meehan, who died in 2007, was the first person to be convicted of membership of the Provisional IRA (PIRA). Bridge Meehan herself went on to be elected as Newtownabbey’s first Sinn Fein councillor in 2001, being reelected in 2005. She was suspended after the allegations of abuse first surfaced in February 2009. Karen Quinlivan QC, defending, said the offences were committed against a background of widespread disapproval of her relationship with Martin Meehan. This resentment came not only from his family but also her own. A remorseful Meehan, she said, had been left to care for three young children “quite abruptly” filling the shies of their mother who had died from cancer. Ms Quinlivan said while it was a serious matter, the level of physical abuse was “at the lower end of the scale” and Meehan had been widely criticised in the media and her own community. Outside the court, Kevin Meehan read a statement on behalf of his sister Mary, in which she said that the crimes of her former stepmother had finally caught up with her. She said BBridge Meehan had terrorised and brutalised her as a youngster and displayed nothing but callous disregard for what happened, rejecting any suggestion that she had shown any regreat. Meehan, the statement said, had ddemonized her through a tangled web of lies and deceit despite her crimes being exposed by her own guilty pleas. However, while Mary said that the court case could help to bring closure to the abuse she suffered at the hands of her stepmother, the 66-year-old had yet to offer her any apology. Meehan, for her part, would only tell reporters as she left the court : “No comment.”

With many thanks to : Allison Morris, The Irish News.

VICTIM: She shows total lack of remorse

THE VICTIM of Bridge Meehan last night expressed her disappointment at the sentence handed to the self-confessed child abuser – and her continuing refusal to apologise. Mary Meehan said her stepmother had shown a “total lack of remorse” for the harm inflicted on her, at a time when she was still grieving the loss of her mother from cancer.

Mary Meehan in tears outside Belfast Crown Court yesterday after her stepmother Bridge Meehan was sentenced for cruelty and assault against her when she was 10 years old.

The former Sinn Fein councillor, who once revelled in the notoriety gained from her marriage to the late Martin Meehan, barked “no comment” at reporters who asked yesterday if she would appoligise. She pushed the media out of her path and muttered expletives as she left the Laganside court complex. Neighbours in Addoyne who spoke to The Irish News back in 2010, when details of the case first came to light, described Mary prior to her mother’s death as happy, well cared-for child who could be seen with biws in her hair playing in the front garden of the family’s Northwick Drive home. However, after her mother’s death and imprisonment of her father, his new girlfriend Briege McLaughlin moved into the family home and took an immediate dislike to the little girl who so closely resembled her mother.

She had walked out on her husband to take up with newly widowed Martin Meehan and this resulted in her being shunned by many in the close-knit community of Ardoyne. Resentful of the affection in which the woman she replaced was held, she appeared to take her anger out on her namesake daughter. Neighbours reported hearing nightly screams from the little girl. Mary developed a stammer and was rarely seen out of her bedroom. On occasions she did attend Holy Cross Girls School she was dirty and unkempt. Social services received calls after she was seen on three seperate occasions with black eyes. Mary Meehan said despite her guilty plea, her late father’s widow has shown no remorse for her actions. “I only ever wanted Briege to admit what she had done to me after all these years,” she said. “She may have pleaded guilty but even then it seemed to be something she was doing to save herself from prison rather than to clear her conscience. “I was disappointed at the leniency of the sentence but more upset that she has never apoligised or even a shred of remorse. “I can only thank my family, friends and children who have supported me throughout this difficult process. “I just want to put it behind me now and move on with the rest of my life.”

With many thanks to : Allison Morris, The Irish News.

THE SENTENCING OF A FORMER SHAME FEIN COUNCILLOR WHO PLEADED GUILTY TO CHILD CRUELTY CHARGES HAS BEEN ADJOURNED U

Briege Meehan sentencing adjourned

Published Tuesday, 02 July 2013

nside+Courts.+_2

The sentencing of a former Sinn Féin councillor who pleaded guilty to child cruelty charges has been adjourned until Friday.

Briege Meegan will be sentenced on Friday. (© UTV)

Opening the prosecution case, QC Frank O’Donoghue recounted how Briege Meehan, 65, carried out a number of acts of cruelty against stepdaughter Mary Meehan over a 15-month period.

Between 14 July 14 1979 and October the following year, he told the court Meehan hit the youngster on the head with a glass baby’s bottle, forced her to smoke numerous cigarettes as a punishment and also to sleep in her urine-soaked bed.

Last month before her trial began Meehan, from Elmfield Street and the widow of the IRA’s former north Belfast commander Martin Meehan, pleaded guilty to charges of assault and cruelty towards her stepdaughter Mary when she was ten years old.

She had also been charged with seven charges of sexually abusing her stepdaughter but those were “left on the books” after she pleaded guilty to charges on an amended indictment.

At the time of the offences, the court heard, Martin Meehan was either in custody or on the run leaving Briege Meehan, who was eight months pregnant at the time, to look after his three children.

Mr O’Donoghue said the first count of assault related to an incident when Mary was tidying up a unit but was not doing it quickly enough so her stepmother hit her over the head with a glass baby bottle, knocking her unconscious.

The lawyer recounted Mary’s statement in court where she described being “covered in blood” and “screaming” in panic.

Mr O’Donoghue said Mary was at one time caught smoking so by way of punishment or deterrence, Briege Meehan forced the child to smoke an unknown number of cigarettes, adding that that incident related to a count of child cruelty while another count accused her of injuring her either with a brush shaft or a shoe.

He told the court how Mary suffered from instances of bed wetting but that her stepmother “forced her to sleep on the wet sheets”.

The lawyer said the child was eventually rescued by Social Services and placed into care in October 1980 and a medical examination revealed 20 bruises sustained while in the care of Briege Meehan.

The offences were committed while Meehan, was the then girlfriend of Martin Meehan while he was on remand in prison on IRA kidnapping charges for which he was eventually jailed for 12 years.

Mr Meehan, who died in 2007, was also the first person to be convicted of membership of the Provisional IRA.

His second wife, Briege, elected as Newtownabbey‘s first Sinn Féin councillor in 2001 and again in 2005 was suspended from the post after the allegations of abuse first surfaced in February 2009.

Defence QC Karen Quinlivan argued that whilst it was a serious matter, the level of physical abuse was “at the lower end of the scale” for which Meehan had been widely criticised in the media and her own community.

She said that Meehan had “expressed remorse” for the way she treated her stepdaughter but added that the care of all three children came about “quite abruptly” when Martin Meehan senior was put into jail and she was left filling the shoes of their mother who had tragically died from cancer.

In addition, claimed the lawyer, there was widespread disapproval from all side of hers and Martin Meehan’s family over their relationship because she was married at the time.

Releasing Meehan on continuing bail, Judge Gordon Kerr QC said he would review all the papers in the case and pass sentence on Friday.

With many thanks to:

© UTV News

Novena to St Maximilian Kolbe for Irish POW…s, every month on the 10th *also for civilians being persecuted by the PSNI*

 Novena to St Maximilian Kolbe for Irish POWs, every month on the 10th *also for civilians being persecuted by the PSNI*

 
Today at 06:00 until 18 May at 18:00 in EDT
  •  
    wherever you are
  •  
    Saint Maximilian Kolbe, your life of love and labor for souls was sacrificed amid the horrors of a concentration camp and hastened to its end by an injection of a deadly drug. O Lord Jesus Christ, Who said, “greater love than this no man has that a man lay down his life… for his friends,” through the intercession of Saint Maximilian Kolbe whose life illustrated such love, we beseech Thee to grant us our petitions.• Redeeming God, we lift up all those who are incarcerated, please protect them from abuse.
    • Let Your Perfect Justice cut through and aid them now.
    • Let them be charged so they can have a hearing & trial or let them be released.
    • Give them faith and love to sustain them in disappointment.
    • Strengthen their will and courage to face their everyday struggles.
    • Ever loving Jesus, may this cross of wrongful judgment be lifted from those to whom it does not belong, please help them to gain their freedom quickly and legally.
    ***We also pray special protection for Irish civilians who are undergoing persecution at the hands of the PSNI. Watch over them, especially their little ones who are not spared from vicious threats***St Maximilian gave up his life for a total stranger in the concentration camp and loved his persecutors, giving us an example of unselfish love for all men — a love that was inspired by true devotion to Mary.

    Grant, O Lord Jesus, that we too may give ourselves entirely without reserve to the love and service of our Heavenly Queen in order to better love and serve our fellow man in imitation of Thy humble servant, Saint Maximilian.
    Amen

POSTED ON BEHALF OF : Public event · By Sealbhaigh Ceiteach Childs

A Prayerful Heart – St. Bernadette Soubirous, 1844-1879

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.204522672958474.48853.121944477882961&type=3

 A Prayerful Heart

Let the crucifix be not only in my eyes and on my breast, but in my heart.
O Jesus! Release all my affections and draw them upwards. Let my crucified heart sink forever into yours and bury itself in the mysterious wound made by the entry of the lance.