BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: UK: N Ireland  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Sunday, 8 December, 2002, 15:53 GMT
Village marks INLA atrocity
It was one of the worst atrocities of the Troubles
It was one of the worst atrocities of the Troubles
A remembrance service has been held on Sunday to honour 17 people killed in an INLA bomb.

This weekend marks the 20th anniversary of the Droppin' Well bomb in Ballykelly, County Londonderry.

It was one of the worst atrocities of the Troubles.

John Cooke:
John Cooke: "We loved spoiling her and she loved us"
Eleven soldiers from a nearby Army base and six civilians died in the explosion, which was claimed by the Irish National Liberation Army.

Sunday's remembrance service was held at Shackleton barracks in Ballykelly.

On 6 December 1982, the bomb ripped through the Droppin' Well pub where 150 people were enjoying a night out.

'Errand'

Most of the victims were crushed under the heavy masonry of the pubs concrete ceiling.

Patricia Cooke, 21, suffered terrible injuries and died in hospital 10 days later.

Her brother - who still owns the pub - left to go on an errand just three minutes before the blast.


She was 25 when she was killed, she was killed instantly

Sharon McClarey
Victim's sister

"She was the baby in the family," said John Cooke.

"She was spoilt. We loved spoiling her and she loved us.

"One of the comments at the post mortem, the doctor who did it didn't understand how she lived so long because of the injuries.

"I'm sure part of that was the way she loved us and we loved her. She was trying to hold in there and we wanted her to hold in. It was a sad loss."

'Two graves'

Sharon McClarey said every anniversary is very emotional. She lost her sister Carol in the bomb.

Sharon believes the attack eventually cost another sister - Nicola - her life too.

"Carol was married with two children aged six and two," she said.

"She was 25 when she was killed, she was killed instantly. My other sister Nicola was 19 at the time.
Sharon McClarey:
Sharon McClarey: "Every anniversary is very emotional"

"She was very badly injured. The hospital staff told us to get two graves dug because we had lost both of them.

"But she fought. She never enjoyed good health, she suffered badly and was mentally tortured.

"We will never know what Nicola went through or what she experienced. You could nearly say the bomb ended her life."

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC NI's Kieron Tourish:
"The bomb ripped through the Droppin' Well pub where 150 people were enjoying a night out"
See also:

15 Aug 00 | N Ireland
18 Apr 00 | N Ireland
20 Aug 00 | N Ireland
01 Sep 00 | N Ireland
Links to more N Ireland stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more N Ireland stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes