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Tell us where Columba is, pleads brother of Disappeared victim

By Staff Reporter

The brother of a teenager murdered and buried in secret during the Troubles has made a heartfelt appeal on the 10th anniversary of his mother's death.

Columba McVeigh, from Donaghmore, Co Tyrone, was just 17 when he was abducted by the IRA in 1975.

Despite extensive searches at Emyvale Forest in Co Monaghan his body has never been found.

Ten years ago today Columba's mother Vera died.

Her son Oliver said that he hoped those with information about where Columba's remains were buried will now "heed the words of Gerry Adams" and come forward to the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims' Remains (ICLVR).

At the weekend the ICLVR recovered remains in Rouen, France, which are believed to be those of Seamus Ruddy, a 32-year-old teacher from Co Down who was abducted in Paris by the INLA in 1985, murdered and buried.

Sinn Fein leader Mr Adams welcomed the recovery.

"Efforts must continue to recover the three remaining bodies," Mr Adams said.

"I would appeal to anyone with information to come forward."

Mr McVeigh said all his family want is the same as Mr Ruddy's - for the body to be returned home to be given a Christian burial.

"Seamus' name is on the gravestone of his mother and Columba's name is on my mother's headstone," he said.

"Our mother went to her grave 10 years ago broken-hearted. Our family cannot and will not rest until he is found and brought home. The work in France shows that with the right information the ICLVR will locate and recover the remains of those so cruelly taken from us and secretly buried.

"I saw that Gerry Adams has commended the work of the ICLVR and has urged people with information on the remaining three cases to come forward with information.

"I hope and pray that those who know more about where Columba is but have so far stayed silent heed his words."

Three of the 16 Disappeared victims are still to be recovered - Mr McVeigh, Belfast man Joe Lynskey and undercover soldier Robert Nairac.

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