Tributes to mother of second Troubles victim

Posted By: January 30, 2018

Mary Ward “never got over the death of son Peter.”

Brendan Hughes. Irish News. Belfast. Tuesday, January 30, 2018

MOURNERS gathered in west Belfast yesterday for the funeral of a woman whose teenage son was the second murder victim of the Troubles.

Requiem Mass was celebrated for Mary Ward, who died peacefully at her home on Thursday aged 97, in St Paul’s Church on Falls Road at 1 pm, with burial afterward at Milltown cemetery.

Her son Peter Ward was 18 when he was murdered by a UVF gang in the Shankill Road area on June 26, 1966.

The UVF was banned two days after the teenager’s murder by then Stormont prime minister Terence O’Neill.

Mrs. Ward said later she had “never got over Peter… there are times I just sit in the house at night crying about him.”

She lived for more than five decades after his death and was hailed a loving mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.

Mr. Ward died after a bullet pierced his heart when he was ambushed as he left the Malvern Arms in Malvern Street, having gone to the bar with workmates from the International Hotel in the city center for a drink after coming off a shift.

One of his workmates, Liam Doyle from west Belfast, was shot in the leg and Strabane man Andrew Kelly suffered abdominal wounds in the gun attack.

The shooting came just two weeks after west Belfast man John Scullion was shot dead by a loyalist gang outside his home in Clonard, off Falls Road.

Mrs. Ward, who lived at Beechmount Parade, is survived by her daughter Isobel, son Thomas and family circle.