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  • Christina Drummond

Sgt. Barry Cox, Household Division, Blues and Royals; Sgt. Sheridan Young, RMP; Sgt. Derek Reed, Roy

Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1973, four NCOs were killed in a bomb explosion as they got into a car outside the Knock Na Moe Castle Hotel in Omagh, Co. Tyrone. They were attached to the Army Air Corps, two of them being helicopter pilots. A fifth soldier, Sergeant Frederick Drake, Inniskilling Dragoon Guards, was fatally injured and died on 3rd June; from Thetford in Norfolk, he was 25 years old. They had been at a regular weekly dance, and as they were getting into the car at the end of the evening, it exploded; it was believed that movement of the car activated a clothes-pin device which completed a circuit, thereby causing the explosion. An RUC officer said that the scene was “utter carnage” and not like anything he had ever seen before. The men had left the hotel before most of the other people attending the dance, otherwise at least four dozen other people may have been killed. The IRA’s East Tyrone battalion claimed responsibility. Those who died that night were: Sergeant Barry Cox, Household Division of the Blues and Royals, he was 28 and married. Sergeant Sheridan Young, Royal Military Police; from Bourne End in Buckinghamshire, he was 26 years old. Royal Marine Sergeant Derek Reed; from York, he was 28 years old and married. Staff Sergeant Arthur Place, Prince of Wales’ Own Regiment; from York, he was 29 years old and married.

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