We had sought official recognition for an anniversary memorial but this has not been forthcoming, so we intend to gather in our capacity as former police officers from the Republic and Northern Ireland simply to mark the ending of these police forces and to commemorate the over 500 other police officers who were murdered by the IRA during and after the War of Independence and in 1916.
These men were, for the most part, honourable and honest police officers and many were killed while off-duty, often in front of their families.
Most were ambushed and killed while going about their lawful duties. The circumstances of their deaths were in many cases exceptionally brutal.
The point of our memorial is not to denigrate the role of the IRA and others in 1916 and 1922, but to mark the lives and deaths of the policemen who suffered and died for doing their duty. We have the beautifully restored Memorial Gardens to mark the men and women who died in the world wars. We feel it is also time that we should remember those who served in the RIC and DMP.
There remain two plots to the RIC and DMP in Glasnevin and we intend to gather there on Saturday and welcome anyone who wishes to join us for a short interdenominational service and wreath-laying.
Patrick McCarthy & Gerard Lovett
(Retired members of An Garda Síochána)