‘Victim of the conflict’

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FROM: Councillor Mairead O’Dowd.

Open Letter To the Editor Lurgan Mail.

I am proud and honoured to say that Michael Crossey is my uncle. An uncle that I never got to know because he was tragically killed in a conflict not of his making.

Michael is described by everyone who knew him as a gentleman and a dedicated republican who witnessed the terror that was unleashed on his family and neighbours and like others he made a conscious decision to oppose that terror and the regime responsible for it and no rewriting of history will alter that fact.

Much was said against Michael and the cause which he died for in the Lurgan Mail of December 8. This consisted of the usual untruths and rehearsed party lines but the truth is that Michael was a victim of an unjust society and no amount of revisionism will change that. Michael was a victim like the thousands of others who died in the conflict, the tears that his family shed, are the same tears as those shed by the families of the other victims.

As we move on from the past many challenges are ahead of us, one of the many challenges is remembrance of the dead. Outbursts like those of Cllr Baxter only serve those who wish to create a hierarchy of victims and who are not interested in or capable of recognising the pain of the other side.