Service remembers RUC men murdered 40 years ago

Reserve constable Samuel Clarke was murdered along with RUC colleague Sgt Patrick Maxwell 40 years ago
Reserve constable Samuel Clarke was murdered along with RUC colleague Sgt Patrick Maxwell 40 years ago
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The daughter of an RUC Reserve constable, murdered in an IRA ambush 40 years ago, has told of how she “will never forgive the men who killed him”.

Shirley White, 55, from Coleraine, was 15-years-old and living in Castlecaulfield when her father Samuel Clarke was murdered along with 36-year-old Sergeant Patrick Maxwell – a married man with five children from Dungannon – in an ambush at Clonavaddy near Pomeroy on November 25, 1975.

They were responding to a call by Garda in Monaghan to inform a member of the public his sister had died across the border.

According to Lost Lives, the book that recorded Troubles deaths, the constable who received the call rechecked to make sure it was genuine, and the Garda confirmed the request.

Mrs White – the eldest of three children – said on the day her father was murdered he had bought her a new pair of shoes.

“He told me I would have to look after them because it would be a long time before I would get another pair and that was it,” she said.

“My mother died 11 years ago and she was broken hearted from the day it happened. She went to his grave twice a day every day.

“I also think he had a foresight that he would be killed because he had everything in order. I remember he was a good hard-working man.”

She added that since her father’s death “the heart was knocked out of our home”.

On Wednesday night an act of remembrance was held for the two men at victims’ group South East Fermanagh Foundation’s monthly members meeting in Lisnaskea.

A SEFF spokesman said their “thoughts and prayers are with the families of the two officers murdered”.