Hundreds gathered in Buncrana, Letterkenny, Gweedore and Donegal Town to remember all those murdered and injured 50 years ago to the day, and to also show their support to the families in their long and continued fight for justice.
Over 100 people stood in the harsh rain and wind in Buncrana’s Market Square, many of them holding placards stating: ‘Bloody Sunday 50th Anniversary, Time for Justice’, while others held candles in remembrance.
A minute’s silence was also held.
Of those who gathered, some were old enough to remember the devastating events of Bloody Sunday, while others knew those killed, wounded or bereaved.
There were also children in attendance at the vigil - born almost five decades after that tragic day, but whose parents and grandparents will continue to tell them of those who lost their lives and the many who fought and continue to fight for justice.
The Sinn Fein councillor said: “Although it was 50 years ago and happened before I was born, it is still something that resonates with the people of Inishowen. Our near neighbours were massacred in the most horrific circumstances by members of the British Army 50 years ago today. It was a day that changed Irish history forever. It changed the direction our country would go in and it’s only right that we, as people, gather here in a dignified way and remember the innocent victims of Bloody Sunday.”
He added: “There are people from Inishowen who would have been there that day and we know people who were there and survived. Thousands would die as a consequence of what happened that day and it’s important that we always, always remember.”
Donegal TD Deputy Padraig MacLochlainn said the people of Donegal wanted to send a strong message of support and strength to the people of Derry.
The Sinn Fein TD said: “There are different vigils being held in Buncrana, Gweedore, Donegal Town and Letterkenny today, so hundreds of people across Donegal are standing with the people in Derry. It’s a great turn out here in Buncrana and it’s our message to the families of the Bloody Sunday victims that we are still with you on the journey, we support your campaign for justice and you’ve inspired us for all these years.”
He added: “I think what was so apparent was they tried to whitewash and tell us what we saw with our own eyes didn’t happen - these civil rights protestors, many of them just teenagers, were not involved in any violence whatsoever. They were protesting for their dignity and human rights and they were gunned down, just like those before them in Ballymurphy only a few months before. The families are on that journey still and we need to make sure that justice is completely done.”