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Parents of Mullaghmore schoolboy victim Paul Maxwell say event keeps his memory alive

By Adrian Rutherford

The parents of an Enniskillen schoolboy who died at Mullaghmore say they have drawn comfort from Prince Charles' visit to the village.

Paul Maxwell was on board the Shadow V when it was blown up by the IRA on August 27, 1979.

Killed: Paul Maxwell
Killed: Paul Maxwell

His father John Maxwell and mother Mary Hornsey attended a service of reconciliation, before meeting with the prince afterwards.

For Mrs Hornsey it was particularly poignant as it marked her first return to Mullaghmore in more than three decades.

Afterwards, she said it had been a positive experience.

"Today meant a great deal to me - it is something that I would not have missed for the world," she told the Belfast Telegraph.

"I came here and I just didn't know how I was going to handle it. I had a lot of apprehension about it. But, after the service in the church, my goodness, what a change.

"I felt not just forgiveness in the church but warmth and generosity. Extending the hand to others - it was palpable, a marvellous experience."

Mrs Hornsey visited Mullaghmore a fortnight after the bomb attack, and had not returned since.

"I had come back about two weeks after the tragedy," she added.

"I brought some red roses and I walked around to the headland, to where the tragedy had happened, and I threw the roses in the water.

"I said goodbye to my son and to the others who had been murdered there, and I also said goodbye to Mullaghmore. I never thought I would come back, but I did today, and I'm glad for it, and I mean to come back again."

She said yesterday's visit had also stirred many painful memories.

"Of course it does because you see the place where it happened, and it brings it all back," she added.

Mr Maxwell is a frequent visitor to Mullaghmore and still has a holiday cottage in the area.

He hailed the visit as a huge step forward in the Anglo-Irish narrative.

"I think it is tremendously good for British-Irish relations. It wouldn't have happened some years ago. It's a sign of the times and a sign of better times ahead."

John and Mary sat close to the prince and Duchess of Cornwall during the reflective event at St Columba's church at Drumcliffe.

They were also among a group who met with the royal couple after they made the short trip northward to the picturesque harbour village.

Mr Maxwell felt both he and the prince benefited from the pilgrimage.

"In some ways it was difficult because it brings back memories, but on the other hand it helps to keep the memory of Paul alive, which is important," he added.

"I think he (Charles) got something out of it. There was a lot of emotion involved."

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Parents of Mullaghmore schoolboy victim Paul Maxwell say event keeps his memory alive

Recovery of the body of Lord Mountbatten, killed in an explosion on his boat by the IRA. (1979). FILE PIC.
Recovery of the body of Lord Mountbatten, killed in an explosion on his boat by the IRA. (1979). FILE PIC.
Lord Louis Mountbatten
MSI Earl Mountbatten Funeral
Noel Coward(left) with Earl Mountbatten of Burma.
11th May 1937: Lord Louis Mountbatten chats to a spectator at a polo match at Hurlingham. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
File photo dated 20/11/1947 of Princess Elizabeth, now Queen, and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, now the Duke of Edinburgh, at Buckingham Palace after their wedding ceremony. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will mark their diamond wedding anniversary with a special service of thanksgiving next week. Retracing their footsteps down the aisle, the royal couple will return to Westminster Abbey, where they married 60 years ago. See PA Story ROYAL Anniversary. Photo credit should read: PA Wire
File photo dated 20/11/1947 Princess Elizabeth, now Queen, and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, now the Duke of Edinburgh with their eight bridesmaids in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace, on their wedding day. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will mark their diamond wedding anniversary with a special service of thanksgiving next week. Retracing their footsteps down the aisle, the royal couple will return to Westminster Abbey, where they married 60 years ago. See PA Story ROYAL Anniversary. Photo credit should read: PA Wire
Lady Edwina Mountbatten (1901 - 1960) with Indian prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru (1889 - 1964) at a reception given for him by the Indian High Commissioner in London at Kensington Palace Gardens, 11th February 1955. (Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
In this file photo taken in August 1947 and released by Indian Ministry of Defense, Indian last Governor General Lord Mountbatten salutes the Indian national flag hosted at India Gate as Lady Edwina, second right, and India's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru,right, looks on, during independence day celebrations, in New Delhi, India, August 1947. Sixty years ago this month, India and Pakistan won their Independence, now Pakistan, no stranger to domestic turmoil, is embroiled in an increasingly violent struggle between Islamic extremists and moderates, where as India is racing to become an economic powerhouse, lightning growth has transformed the country and fueled a consumer boom. (AP Photo/Indian Ministry of Defense, HO, File)
Britain Queen Elizabeth II...Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, right, and her husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, centre with back to camera, are greeted on their arrival at London Airort, on Feb. 7, 1952. The royal couple cut short their official trip to Kenya and returned home following the death of King George VI. Prince Philip is talking to Earl Mountbatten of Burma, left. (AP Photo)...A
14th March 1956: Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru (1889 - 1964) and Dr Radhakrishnan (1888 - 1975) welcoming Viscount Louis Mountbatten (1900 - 1979) and his wife to India at New Delhi Airport. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
PACEMAKER PRESS INTL BELFAST 26/8/09. A Collect of Paul Maxwell with his sister Lisa , who was murdered with Lord Louis Mountbatten by an IRA bomb while sailing near his holiday home in County Sligo, Ireland, on 27th August, 1979
Royal visit to Ireland...Classiebawn Castle in Mullaghmore Co Sligo which used to be owned by Lord Mountbatten as the town is to be visited by the Prince Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall later this month. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday May 15, 2015. See PA story ROYAL Ireland. Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA Wire...A
PACEMAKER PRESS INTL BELFAST 26/8/09. Mary Hornsey 'The Mother of Paul Maxwell, who was murdered with Lord Louis Mountbatten by an IRA bomb while sailing near his holiday home in County Sligo, Ireland, on 27th August, 1979
PACEMAKER PRESS INTL BELFAST 26/8/09. A Collect of Paul Maxwell,It was the last ever picture taken of him who was murdered with Lord Louis Mountbatten by an IRA bomb while sailing near his holiday home in County Sligo, Ireland, on 27th August, 1979
View of a page from the book of register, showing the wedding of Princess Elizabeth, now Queen, and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, now the Duke of Edinburgh, at Westminster Abbey, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday November 13, 2007. Issue date: Friday November 16, 2007. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will mark their diamond wedding anniversary with a special service of thanksgiving next week. Retracing their footsteps down the aisle, the royal couple will return to Westminster Abbey, where they married 60 years ago. See PA Story ROYAL Anniversary. Photo credit should read: Steve Parsons/PA Wire
File photo dated 31/10/1947 of Princess Elizabeth, now Queen, and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, RN, now the Duke of Edinburgh, receiving a wedding present of an electric sewing machine at Clydebank town hall where they were launching the liner 'Caronia.' PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will mark their diamond wedding anniversary with a special service of thanksgiving next week. Retracing their footsteps down the aisle, the royal couple will return to Westminster Abbey, where they married 60 years ago. See PA Story ROYAL Anniversary. Photo credit should read: PA Wire
Lord Mountbatten in navy uniform 1965
Library filer from 1965 of Earl Mountbatten of Burma. The Irish Government rejected an offer from Lord Mountbatten for the free use of his castle in County Sligo, according to newly-released files. The former Earl of Burma, who was killed by an IRA bomb in 1979, had inherited Classiebawn Castle after the death of his wife. He wrote to the Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave in March 1975 to offer the castle to the state as a gesture to cement his family's close connection with Ireland.
File photo dated 20/11/1947 of Princess Elizabeth, now Queen, and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, now the Duke of Edinburgh, at Buckingham Palace after their wedding ceremony. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will mark their diamond wedding anniversary with a special service of thanksgiving next week. Retracing their footsteps down the aisle, the royal couple will return to Westminster Abbey, where they married 60 years ago.

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