Belfast Telegraph

Inquest into murder of pregnant Belfast teen Marian told of hail of bullets in Roden Street

By Rebecca Black

A Belfast woman has described how she was shielded on the ground as a sudden hail of bullets claimed the life of a pregnant teenager in circumstances which are still being disputed 45 years later.

Moyà Hughes was 16-years-old on June 10, 1972 and that evening had been babysitting for David and Josephine Clarke at their home on Excise Street.

As she returned home she found herself caught up in a shooting which claimed the life of Marian Brown (17) who just moments before had been kissing her boyfriend Thomas Corrigan (16) goodnight at the corner of Roden Street and the Grosvenor Road.

The couple had been planning their future together after telling Marian's mother that they were expecting a child and were planning to get married.

Ms Hughes told the inquest that her employers had returned home late and Mr Clarke - who she had known by his middle name Maurice - had walked her home.

They had been walking along Roden Street towards where she lived on Blackwater Street when the shooting started.

"I heard four/five shots, Maurice told me to get down and he shielded me on the ground," she told the inquest.

"I remember getting up and running to my brother's house on Linview Street and stayed there for the night."

She said she was about half way up Roden Street when the shooting started, and described the noise as "bang, bang, bang".

Ms Hughes recalls seeing a couple at the corner of Roden Street but didn't see them being shot or falling down.

"I was 16 years of age, I just ran home," she said.

"I found out what had happened later on the news."

Later this week the inquest is set to hear from a number of soldiers who had been on patrol in the area at the time of the shooting.

A number of the soldiers have applied for anonymity. Judge David McFarland is considering the applications.

Earlier on Wednesday he named one of the soldiers, who has since passed away, as Mr Kendall.

It has never been established who fired the shots that killed Marian. Soldiers who were at the scene have said they were returning fire after a gun man on the corner of Roden Street started firing at them.

A number of witnesses have disputed this claim.

However the inquest has not yet heard evidence to prove whether a terrorist gun man was there or whether the bullet that killed Marian came from a soldier.

The inquest continues.

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