Northern Ireland

Murder victim Ian Ogle's family still racked by grief two years after killing

Christina McMaster with her late brother Ian Ogle
Christina McMaster with her late brother Ian Ogle

The sister of murder victim Ian Ogle has said her family are still racked by grief two years after the killing.

Relatives marked the second anniversary of his death yesterday by laying flowers at his grave.

The 45-year-old was beaten and stabbed at the entrance to Cluan Place in east Belfast, close to his home, on January 27 2019.

Ten people are facing charges in connection with his death.

READ MORE: Mother of Ian Ogle says her family will not be intimidatedOpens in new window ]

Mr Ogle is survived by his partner Vera Johnston, daughter Toni, son Ryan, mother Margaret Elliott, father Harry Ogle, sister Christina McMaster, four brothers, nieces and nephews.

An emotional Ms McMaster said they have found the last two years hugely difficult.

"It's been really, really hard as a family. Everyone is grieving at different stages," she said.

"My mum lost her baby. My daddy lost his baby, his second-born. When I look at Vera, she's left on her own, an empty bed, no soulmate, no Ian," she said.

"Toni and Ryan have no daddy to share things with.

"There are different stages. There are angry stages then there are stages when we all have a laugh and giggle about stuff that he used to do."

Ian Ogle was killed in January 2019
Ian Ogle was killed in January 2019

The family have been upset by graffiti sprayed on walls around east Belfast in recent weeks.

The mother-of-three said lockdown had also made the anniversary of her brother's death more difficult.

"We can't hug or see each other face to face," she said.

"I think when you're in lockdown people's spirits do get low. A song comes on and I think 'our Ian loved that song', or 'I can picture him dancing to that song'.

"I've cleaned and cleaned to take my mind off everything."

Ms McMaster said her brother was passionate about dogs and helped re-home many animals.

"Our Ian was always joking and jumping about and laughing," she said. "If he was telling you a joke he would laugh louder.

"He was a very outgoing person with a big heart. He wouldn't have passed you in the street without saying hello and asking how everybody was doing.

"He was the one you went to if you needed anything. Ian protected us all."

Mr Ogle's family yesterday laid flowers at his grave and the spot where he was killed.

Ms McMaster said they had wanted a larger commemoration but could not because of the pandemic.

"Last year we had a service in the Network Centre, Toni made speeches and we went round as a family to Cluan Place where prayers were said.

"This year we're going to find it very hard because we can't do that."