Belfast Telegraph

Anniversary service to honour victims and give hope 15 years on

BY AMANDA FERGUSON

An uplifting service to honour the Omagh bomb victims and survivors is to be held.

The inter-denominational service of prayer, poetry and music will take place on Sunday at 3pm in the Memorial Garden of Light -  close to the scene of the terrorist attack which devastated the Co Tyrone town on August 15, 1998.

Twenty-nine people, including a young woman heavily pregnant with twins, died as a result of the attack and more than 200 people were injured.

Sunday's service, organised by the Omagh Support & Self Help Group, will feature artwork created as part of a special Stars of Hope project.

Stars of Hope helps communities devastated by natural disasters, mass-shootings, bombings and industrial accidents, with the healing process as participants are empowered by painting hopeful messages, inspirational words and colourful designs on wooden stars.

Omagh Support & Self Help Group will display the stars in the memorial garden at the weekend and after some will be transported to New York for distribution across the globe, while others will be displayed at the Bridge Centre in Holmview Avenue.

Three young ambassadors – Megan Lindsay, Caoimhe Doherty and Harriett Vickers – who participated in a recent Strength to Strength programme in New York will read poetry on Sunday that was sent to Omagh from all over the world in the immediate aftermath of the 1998 atrocity.

Megan (14) is the granddaughter of an RUC officer killed in a bomb attack in 1981 and Caoimhe (15) lost her brother in the Omagh bomb.

Harriett (20) was 13 days old when she was in the Warrington bomb and her mother died as a result of her injuries.

A spokeswoman for Omagh Support and Self Help Group said it was pleased representatives from the British and Irish governments would be attending Sunday's service.

"We invite and welcome everyone to come along and join us on the August 11 to remember and honour all those who have suffered and those who are still suffering."

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