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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Kathleen Lyr Req: Back Home in Derry (Bobby Sands) (84* d) RE: BACK HOME IN DERRY 25 Sep 98

I would like to think that I know something about the situation, but htankfully I have not had to deal with it first hand on a regular basis. There have been comments and such directed towards me due to my background, but I feel that I can look at it in a fair context. With that said, let me tell you a little story. . .

From my understanding, the clan O'Neill has been a powerful clan for thousands of years. To be the High Ling, you had to be an O'Neill, etc, etc. And so it continued untill the late 1500's, early 1600's when Hugh O'Neill led the doomed Last Great Rebellion and fled the country. The O'Neill family continued to support the Irish cause against England. Then, at the end of the 1800's, a branch of the O'Neills was forced to come to America, Rochester, New York (by way of Canada) to be precise, although this was not because of the famine. They lived there, raising their children as good Catholics. One James O'Neill married and had four kids, the youngest named Martha. Prior to his settling down, he had fought in WWII, contracted malaria in Africa, and spent some time recooperating in Ireland, where he became a supporter of the IRA and possibly a member (but I have no record or that). He also raised his kids Catholic.

Meanwhile, the McMichael family of the Stewarts of Appin in Scotland, were fighting their own struggle agaisnt the English. Being unsuccessful, they fled to Northern Ireland, where they lived for a time until they got into trouble with the law there and came to America. They settled in north western Pennsylvania. One of the sons' sons was Rev. William McMichael, a prominent Presbyterian (please forgive my spelling) minister, who built 6 (I think) churhces and wrote a number of books. His children and grandchildren were all raised Protestant, but William (different one) married a Catholic woman and raised his four kids as Catholic, which did not make the family very happy, but hsi immediate family still talked to him. His oldest son was named Dennis.

As fate would have it, Dennis McMichael and Martha O'Neill happened to both be hired by the same company and became friends, fell in love, got married, and had four kids, the oldest named Kathleen. I would like to point out that my mother's family is still supportive of a Free Ireland, while one of my father's relaties, Gary, heads a Protestant political party in Northern Ireland. In fact, Gary's father was killed by an IRA car bomb in the 80's. So if this isn't sleeping with hte enemy in real life, I don't know what is.

The End

Sorry that was so long, but it was nice to tell it to people who would understand. I live in a very Slovak town where I was once asked if I was speaking English when I told my classmates my name at the public school. The sad thing is the kid was being serious!



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