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Permission refused for Old IRA Funeral?

category waterford | history and heritage | other press author Saturday July 04, 2009 21:30author by Archangel Report this post to the editors

Son of Flying Column veteran refused permission to spread Father's ashes on Republican Plot

During the War of Independence, George Lennon was the leader of the West Waterford Flying Column, taking part in nearly twenty actions against Crown forces and later fighting in the Civil War from which he withdrew when it became obvious that it was destroying the country.

He emigrated to the USA in 1946 (due largely to his opposition to Catholic influence on Irish society) , where he became a decicated pacifist , protesting against the Vietnam War.

Lennon was a fighter in his youth and a man of peace in his last years.

Recently, his only son announced his wish to spread his father's ashes on the Old IRA plot in Kilrossanty. However, the Sinn Fein affiliated West Waterford Old IRA Association has refused permission for this and the Department of Defence has declined to allow any military presence at any such ceremony.

The situation has been complicated by Republican Sinn Fein's decision to name one of their branches for George Lennon, without the permission and against the wishes of his family.

It would be shameful for such a man to be forgotten in this manner.

author by Diarmuid Breatnach - Personal capacitypublication date Tue Jul 07, 2009 04:03Report this post to the editors

Sorry to hear about this; what do you and the family propose?

author by pat cpublication date Tue Jul 07, 2009 10:57Report this post to the editors

First of all the West Waterford Old Ira Association cannot stop the ashes being scattered unless they own the plot. If they do then some publicity in the local media might change their attitude.

Someone who took part in active service iduring the War of Independence is entitled to a firing party regardless of what organisation that he was afterwards involved in.

In February 1981, Geoffery Coulter died and was buried with full military honours including a firing party. Even though Ruari O'Brádaigh gave the oration. (I attended the funeral.)

The best way to advance this is through making as much hassle as possible for those blocking the scattering of the ashes.

Contact TDs, the media, ring the Joe Duffy show.

author by Ivan Lennon - nonepublication date Tue Jul 07, 2009 20:54author email ilennon at rochester dot rr dot comauthor address Rochester,NYauthor phone 585 288 0636Report this post to the editors

A chara

Initial D of D refusal via a stamped signature - was in December of 2008
More recent WWOIRA refusal was based on their "remit" over the Kilrossanty Republican plot where my father's comrades are buried -including nearby Dr.Joe Walsh - Flying Column M.D.

Anyone desirous of the details of my father's life and his Free State struggles should feel free to contact me directly at ilennon@rochester.rr.com

It is long overdue to accord to the active men of the Deise Brigade some of the focus accorded Irishmen who fought in the Great War

I have contacted many in the Republic - including Waterford FF TDs
I have a this point, many years after I began my enquery, nearly given up.

Ivan Lennon
Rochester, NY

author by Pheffpublication date Tue Sep 01, 2009 20:25Report this post to the editors

Whoever is responsible for the decision not to allow this mans family to scatter his ashes on the grave of his fallen comrades should be ashamed of themselves.

When I read or hear accounts of what these men and women had to do, and what they and their family's had to endure, (homes being wrecked and burned to the ground) just makes me wonder, would our present day leaders be prepared to sacrifice or suffer a mere fraction of what these people had to?

I think not........Will we ever see their likes again?

Probably not.......what a pity.......just when we really need men like these

author by mahonvalleypublication date Sun Jan 24, 2010 12:56Report this post to the editors

433. Mr. E. Collins asked the Minister for Defence if he will give all old IRA medal holders a monthly allowance and a burial allowance and if he will make a comprehensive statement on the matter.

Minister for Defence (Mr. Faulkner) Padraig Faulkner


Minister for Defence (Mr. Faulkner): The existing arrangements whereby a special allowance, which is payable monthly in arrear, is awarded to a veteran of the War of Independence who has a duly awarded Service (1917-1921) Medal provide, among other things, for the application of a means test. At present more than 6,000 such allowances are paid. In addition some 3,000 military [66] service pensions are paid. The pensioners concerned are entitled to the Service (1917-1921) Medal with Bar and some 1,000 of them are in receipt of the special allowance in addition to their pensions. Apart from the 8,000 veterans who are thus in receipt of the special allowance or the service pension or both, it is estimated that there are a further 4,000 medal holders still alive.

The purpose of the special allowance is to give a measure of support to veterans who on account of age or incapacity are not in a position to support themselves. The means test has been relaxed progressively over the years and is now far from severe. If it were further modified to permit of the grant of an allowance, irrespective of means, every military service pensioner and medal holder, no matter how well off he or she might be, would automatically be eligible for it in the same way as the most needy veteran who had no assessable means. Such a situation would tend to vitiate the whole purpose of the special allowance scheme.

As regards the scheme of funeral grants, the position is that it has already been extended since 1 July 1979 to include all veterans who have the duly awarded Service Medal.

Related Link: http://historical-debates.oireachtas.ie/D/0318/D.0318.1....html
author by iamsampublication date Mon Jan 25, 2010 23:03Report this post to the editors

Is it possible that the objection is based on scattering the ashes over existing plots? Perhaps its felt by the organisation or by relatives that its not respectful to those that are already laid to rest in the plot?

Just a suggestion though as Im not familiar with the plot in question.

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