Northern Ireland

Mother of murdered Catholic teenager urges Orange Order to 'rethink' parade for UDA man

UDA member Jim Guiney was killed by the INLA in January 1998
UDA member Jim Guiney was killed by the INLA in January 1998 UDA member Jim Guiney was killed by the INLA in January 1998

The mother of a Catholic teenager murdered by loyalists has urged the Orange Order to rethink a planned parade to "honour" a UDA man killed by republicans 25 years ago.

Marian Walsh was speaking after it emerged the order has organised a parade to remember UDA member Jim Guiney later this month.

She last night branded the planned parade as "insensitive".

Her son Damien (17) was shot dead by the UDA/UFF as he worked at the Dairy Farm shopping centre near Twinbrook, on the outskirts of west Belfast in March 1993.

The teenager was killed not far from where the Orange Order intends to hold a memorial parade for Mr Guiney on January 21.

The Parades Commission website confirms the march, which has not been marked sensitive, has been notified by LOL 1981.

Lisburn Fusiliers Flute Band and 90 participants are expected to take part in the parade, which will begin at Milltown shops before making its way to Derriaghy, Milltown Avenue and Milltown Crescent.

Mr Guiney was shot dead at his carpet shop in Dumurry by the INLA on January 19, 1998.

At his funeral 16 men, some wearing Orange sashes, flanked his coffin, which was draped in a UDA flag and Glasgow Ranger jersey.

Damien Walsh (17) shot dead by the UDA/UFF in March 1993
Damien Walsh (17) shot dead by the UDA/UFF in March 1993 Damien Walsh (17) shot dead by the UDA/UFF in March 1993

Ms Walsh last night urged the parade organisers to reconsider the event.

"They are willing to do this for a UDA man, regardless of the fact that he is also an Orangeman, I mean, it's approving whatever he did when he was in the UDA," she said.

"I would urge them to rethink it because it's sending out a message that they support paramilitarism."

Ms Walsh said that as the mother of a teenager murdered by the UDA "that's what makes it all the more sad, that they would do this".

"It's definitely insensitive," she added.

"It's very close to where Damien was killed."

Mr Guiney was shot dead just weeks after the INLA killed former UVF and LVF commander Billy Wright in the H-Blocks sparking a series of sectarian reprisals by loyalists.

Although a member of the UDA, Mr Guiney was said not to have played an active role for several years with loyalists sources suggesting he supported the peace process and UDA ceasfire.

An RUC officer lays flowers on behalf of relatives of murdered loyalist Jim Guiney who was shot dead by the INLA in his carpet shopin Dunmurry this morning.PICTURE BY PAUL FAITH/PACEMAKER.
An RUC officer lays flowers on behalf of relatives of murdered loyalist Jim Guiney who was shot dead by the INLA in his carpet shopin Dunmurry this morning.PICTURE BY PAUL FAITH/PACEMAKER. An RUC officer lays flowers on behalf of relatives of murdered loyalist Jim Guiney who was shot dead by the INLA in his carpet shopin Dunmurry this morning.PICTURE BY PAUL FAITH/PACEMAKER.

A post circulated on social media pages linked to the Ulster Political Research Group, which offers analysis to the UDA, said "LOL 1981 based in Lisburn "will be holding a parade in his (Mr Guiney's) honour" later this month.

"This is strictly an Orange Order parade and only Orange brethren are permitted to walk and take part in the parade," the post states.

"Please wear full colours."

The post adds that after the parade ends at Milltown Crescent wreaths will be laid at a "community memorial garden".

The Orange Order was contacted for comment.