Permanent memorial to Ballylanders hunger striker

HEADSTONE UNVEILED: Relatives of IRA volunteer, Michael O'Reilly (1899 - 1965), Mary and Maria Terry, with Fianna Councillor, Deirdre O'Brien, who unveiled a headstone to the Ballylanders hunger striker in the old graveyard, Mitchelstown, last Sunday. (Picture: John Ahern)

Almost 60 years after his death, a headstone has been erected at the grave of Ballylanders hunger striker, Michael O’Reilly. 

An IRA volunteer during the War of Independence, Michael O’Reilly was arrested and imprisoned in 1920.

It was during this period, he, together with comrades, embarked on a hunger strike – unable to move or speak and barely conscious, the Republicans ended their ‘fast to the death’ on 13th November, 1920. In the case of Michael O’Reilly, he had survived without food for 94 days. 

Speaking at last Sunday’s commemoration, one of the event organisers, Denny O’Dwyer said Michael O’Reilly’s story deserved to be told and his sacrifice remembered. 

Coverage in this week’s Print & Digital Edition