Funeral date set as Seamus Ruddy’s remains return home

June 2013: ''Anne Morgan, sister of Seamus Ruddy, holding up a picture of her brother
June 2013: ''Anne Morgan, sister of Seamus Ruddy, holding up a picture of her brother

One of the Disappeared victims, Seamus Ruddy, will finally be laid to rest in Newry later this month.

His remains are to be repatriated in Dublin.

PACEMAKER PRESS BELFAST 22-07-2008: The latest attempt to find the body of a County Down man who disappeared in France over 20 years ago has failed. Seamus Ruddy, who went missing 23 years ago. 'Seamus Ruddy, 32, from Newry, was working as a teacher in Paris when he went missing in 1985. It is believed he was killed by members of the INLA.'Representatives from the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims Remains went to Normandy last week.

PACEMAKER PRESS BELFAST 22-07-2008: The latest attempt to find the body of a County Down man who disappeared in France over 20 years ago has failed. Seamus Ruddy, who went missing 23 years ago. 'Seamus Ruddy, 32, from Newry, was working as a teacher in Paris when he went missing in 1985. It is believed he was killed by members of the INLA.'Representatives from the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims Remains went to Normandy last week.

Mr Ruddy’s body was found near Rouen, France, last month after having been secretly buried there in 1985.

He had been abducted in Paris, aged 32, by the INLA.

The book ‘Lost Lives’ describes him as a civilian who was formerly a member of the INLA’s political wing, The Irish Republican Socialist Party.

Meanwhile he is listed as “ex-INLA” by The Conflict Archive on the Internet (an online Troubles encyclopaedia run by the University of Ulster).

His body is being released to the Ruddy family after being received by a coroner at Dublin City Mortuary.

Mr Ruddy’s funeral will take place on Saturday, June 17 in Newry.

He was one of 16 people – known as the ‘Disappeared’ – murdered and secretly buried by republicans during the Troubles.

Searches for their remains have been carried out by the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims’ Remains (ICLVR), an organisation established in 1999 by a treaty between the British and Irish governments to obtain information in confidence to help locate the remains of the Disappeared.

Seamus Ruddy was, until last month, one of four who had never been found despite the efforts of the ICLVR. Three more remain to be found.

Mr Ruddy’s sister, Anne Morgan, told the BBC: “We have waited over 30 years to get Seamus home and to lay him to rest. We never gave up hope despite some very dark times and now our prayers have been answered.”

Ms Morgan also thanked the ICLVR and the French authorities, but appealed for information regarding the three outstanding Disappeared cases: Joe Lynskey, Columba McVeigh and Robert Nairac.