Hundreds gather for Republican Derry Volunteers dinner dance
Almost 500 local people have attended an annual Derry Volunteers dinner dance held in memory of those who have died locally during the Republican struggle.
This year’s dance was staged last Saturday night as part of a series of events to commemorate the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising.
Speaking about the event Sinn Féin Foyle MLA Raymond McCartney said: “This was part of our series of events throughout this 1916 Centenary year and was a fitting and very dignified tribute to our fallen comrades.
“Almost 500 local republicans packed into the Inishowen Gateway Hotel in Buncrana to honour our patriot dead.
“It was very heartening to see so many of the families of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for Irish freedom from 1916 right through to our fallen Volunteers in the most recent phase of our struggle.”
Specially commissioned presentations were made to each of the families to reflect the sacrifice of their loved ones and mark the centenary year during the event.
Mr McCartney said: “The guest speaker on the night was Sinn Féin vice-president Mary Lou MacDonald TD, who summed up for many what has been both an historic and a magnificent year of remembrance with imagination, colour and great pride.
“Mary Lou got a surprise herself on the night when she was awarded the honouree at the annual dinner.
“We would like to thank everyone who has participated in all 1916 commemoration events, large and small, throughout the year.”
Mr McCartney said there was a part to play “for all of us” to complete the work of the “men and women of 1916 and the generations which followed in creating an island true to the vision of the Proclamation and worthy of their sacrifice”.