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  • Christina Drummond

Sergeant Martin Walsh, 321 EOD Unit, Royal Army Ordnance Corps

Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1977, Sergeant Martin Walsh of 321 EOD Unit, Royal Army Ordnance Corps. was killed in Northern Ireland.

In an isolated spot near Newtownbutler in County Fermanagh, he had been investigating a device which had been left in a milk churn, intending to dismantle it, when it exploded and he was thrown 150 yards. Before the explosion, as he reached into the milk churn, he was heard to say: "Oh Christ, what've I got here?" The anti-handling bomb, the first of its type used in Northern Ireland at the time, was reported to have been 100 lbs in weight, and had been left earlier that day by an armed gang.

Sergeant Walsh had originally joined the Military Police before training for two years as a bomb disposal expert, as well as attending a high-threat course before becoming Corporal. He had been serving with his unit based in Omagh at the time of his death, and during his time in Northern Ireland he had made safe 34 devices.

Lieutenant Colonel Derrick Patrick described him as “Self-assured, confident and well-liked by his team.”

Martin, from Hereford, was 28 years old and married with two children.

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