Where were you when

This thread is about where you were and how you reacted to these world changing events on their anniversaries…

So today is the 20th anniversary of that awful day in Omagh.

Back on this day 20 years ago (Jesus, 20???), I came home from watching a game in the club and walked in on my dear old dad, a staunch republican, defender of the Provisional IRA and Sinn Fein, in floods of tears watching the news unfold and my mother out in the kitchen, unable to watch the news.

I sat on the couch and looked on, slack jawed.

May all those hurt, killed or traumatised, either rest in peace, or have solace in the fact that this act alone, may have been the final nail in the coffin of the war in our country.


I was an a camping trip when the news came in on the wireless. It was a travesty

Working in a garage/car accessory shop with the radio on when the headlines came in at 4pm about a bomb in Omagh. When I got home, I was glued to the TV as I had always passed through there on our way to Donegal every year.
I was so angry having been involved in a lot of Co-operation North stuff in school a few years earlier and had hoped that we had seen an end to the needless death and suffering. Thankfully, it never led to a re-escalation of the violence that we had all grown up with.

Was working overtime in Belfast that day. Was on the way home, and was listening on the car radio to Man United and Leicester City, playing on the opening day of the new soccer season, when the broadcast was interrupted to go to the BBC News Room to say that the Ambulance Service of Northern Ireland was reporting several people killed following an explosion in Omagh in County Tyrone. Accelerated home and was glued to the TV thereafter.

A terrible, terrible day.

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Living in Boston. I was in the banshee bar in dorchester when news came through. There was a good few folk from Derry and there was tears from a lot off people. We all just sat there in shock. Never forget it. Horrific day.

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Only 12 at the time. Got home after being at the Motor Races in the Phoenix Park with the father. Walked into the kitchen and remember my mother saying there’d been a bombing in Omagh and they thought it was as bad as Enniskillen.

Was doing some work in the house, listening to radio.

Local radio news reported an explosion in Omagh, not too much detail.

But then constant breaks in the programme asking for all available medical staff to report to work. Knew then it must be bad.

Can’t exactly pinpoint where I was or what I was doing but I can remember how absurd it was that an All-Ireland hurling semi-final was played the next day.

Sad to think that nobody has been held accountable to date.

Was in the gaelthacht with teenagers from Buncrana who knew some of those that lost their lives. Sad sad time.
Later worked on the same site as the chief suspect of making the device. Didnt know at the time. Shocking to think the scumbag was found not guilty on a technacality.

I remember it but honestly cant remember where I was or what I was doing. I think I had just started a new job so was concentrating on that. I do remember my uncle who was from the falls road being very pissed off about it

The mother told me about it when I rang home at the weekend. I don’t think I had a computer in my house at that time and the work computers were just for work stuff. So a few days elapsed before I heard about it. The local news covered all international news in a 60 second slot at the end of the broadcast, so the bombing would have shared billing with whatever was going on in the Middle East or a mud slide in Bangladesh. Local news was rubbish, so I rarely watched it. I often bought the Sindo in the Atlanta bookshop that sold international newspapers, but I would have deliberately not bought one after this. My godmother is from Enniskillen and she (and we) were so upset by that bombing, that it was bad enough to know another similar atrocity had happened. I just couldn’t stomach reading yet more survivor accounts, timelines etc etc. Growing up in the south in the 80’s, you just became numb to it all after a while, even more so, if you actually leave the island. May not be the done thing to admit that, but there you go…

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For all the giving out we do (with good reason) about Off The Ball, this is a brilliantly put together piece.

I remember reading a Joe Sheridan interview where he told how his family were caught up in the tragedy while going to a match in Omagh. His mother was a nurse and tended the wounded.

I actually think they where first on the scene.

The individual stories of some of the people in both the Enniskillen and Omagh bombings are what I remember. And the thought that this would never end.