Memories My Christmas 40 years ago.

Connaught Ranger

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My Christmas 40 years ago,

"C" Company, 46th IRISHBATT UNIFIL Christmas Dinner

at Al-tSultniya, South Lebanon.
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Cpl. Harry "Cass" Cassidy +RIP+ Pte Kenneth McNulty, Pte. Kevin A. Ryan.
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Cpl. Johnny Gill +RIP Pte. Tommy Peoples +RIP+
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Crl Johnny Gill +RIP+ (Green Jumper, Pte. Val Calpin +RIP+
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Pte. Kevin A. Ryan, Pte Freddy Farrell (Cook)
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Cpl. Benny Barber, Capt, John Murphy, Pte Kieron Dykes, Pte John "Jelly Jaws" Brown, facing away from the camera Pte. Eugene Wright.
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Pte Mick "RAT" Rattigen, Comdt. David Taylor +RIP+ singing "The Galway Shawl" CQMS Joe Ganley, BSM Pat Nielan.
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Rear row: Pte "Tex" Brennan, Pte. Kenny McNulty, Cpl. Benny Barber, Pte. Gerry Molloy.
Center: Euguene McGloughlin.
Bottom row: Sgt. K.Reid. Pte Davie Blaney +RIP+

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Pte. Freddie Farrell, Pte. Val Calpin +RIP+ Cpl. Johnny Green +RIP+ Battalion Catering Staff.
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Pte. Kevin A. Ryan aka "Connaught Ranger."
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Pte. Freddy Farrell, Pte. Val Calpin +RIP+
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Back to camera, Pte Kenny McNulty, head down with cigarette Pte Georgie Gethins, BSM Pat Nielan, with guitar Pte. Kieron Dykes.
Drinking beer - Pte. Eugene Wright, to his left Pte. Mick "Spike" McCormack +RIP+


Some are sadly no longer with us,

Cpl. Harry Cassidy.
Pte. David Blaney,
Pte. Tommy Peoples,
Cpl. Johnie Gill.
Pte. Val Calpin.
Commandant David Taylor.
Pte. Mike"Spike" McCormack.

May they + Rest In Peace +
 
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How long were you deployed in Lebanon @Connaught Ranger ?
The tours were short back then just over 6 months if you count the Battalion training period prior to deployment, we went out in early November 1979 to the end of April 1980.
Later on my brother Kieron did two tours back to back, but that option was not allowed in my time (came about due to the shortage of manpower in the Irish Defence Forces.)
 
The tours were short back then just over 6 months if you count the Battalion training period prior to deployment, we went out in early November 1979 to the end of April 1980.
Later on my brother Kieron did two tours back to back, but that option was not allowed in my time (came about due to the shortage of manpower in the Irish Defence Forces.)

Was at that time the Irish Defence Forces a professional army?

Two brothers in the Army... do your family have a military tradition?

I see you sometimes in photos in Romania in uniform. Are you deployed in Romania in some type of diplomatic mission?

Sorry if I ask too much. Don´t reply if you consider my curiosity excesive.
 
Was at that time the Irish Defence Forces a professional army?

Two brothers in the Army... do your family have a military tradition?

I see you sometimes in photos in Romania in uniform. Are you deployed in Romania in some type of diplomatic mission?

Sorry if I ask too much. Don´t reply if you consider my curiosity excesive.

The Irish Defence Forces has in my opinion always been a professional Army despite not being a member of NATO, and poorly equipped in the past, they started their Peacekeeping Operations back in the early 1960's. Most of my career was on the Irish border during "The Troubles" as the Irish refer to it.
My twin brother joined first, I followed, mainly due to economic reasons, no other work only other option, emigration. Another brother joined the Navy for a short period, left because they spent so much time on shore rather than at sea, all my other brothers (I have 6) have served in the Reserve Defence Force either with Infantry or Cavalry units.
I wear camo pants/ camo jackets or military style clothing a lot, stops the ethnic minority hassling me for money, they figure I am a poor soldier lol!
I also wear a green jacket with my official medals and the Blue Beret on occasion when attending the St. Patrick's Day Celebration up in Bucharest upon the invitation of the Irish Embassy. I also wear similar/suitable clothing when I have been asked to give a display of my military medal collection at the Police Station or Military Officers Casina here in Deva on a few occasions, I also get invited to the Commemorative events at the local graveyard when the fallen of WW1 and WW2 are commemorated.
In 2018 I was asked to participate in the parade on the 1 December Romanian National Day Parade in Hunedoara as a United Nations Peacekeeping veteran (despite having participated in a few UN Missions, there is no UN veterans Association in Romania as of yet.) In 2019 I had to decline because of a lung infection.
 
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Thanks @Connaught Ranger . I hope you are already recovered from your health problem.

Thanks, getting there, the changing weather here is not helping relatively mild warm days and freezing days and freezing cold nights, virus paradise, mildest winter in some ways I have known since moving to live here in 2003. Homemade Pine syrup is a big help.
 
Hi, hoping you see this message.
My name's Paul, Harry Cassidy was an uncle and godfather to me. Is there anything you could tell me about him?
I was only young when he passed but have some fond memories. Anything would be greatly appreciated, I could maybe pass the information on to some more of our family, it'd mean alot to the people hes left behind.

Thanks a million in advance, all the best,
Paul.
 
Hi, hoping you see this message.
My name's Paul, Harry Cassidy was an uncle and godfather to me. Is there anything you could tell me about him?
I was only young when he passed but have some fond memories. Anything would be greatly appreciated, I could maybe pass the information on to some more of our family, it'd mean alot to the people hes left behind.

Thanks a million in advance, all the best,
Paul.
Hi Paul,
just seen your post, I am just about to travel up to Bucharest from my home in Transylvania for the St. Patrick's Day Function,
so I dont have time to give you any info before I depart, but, will certainly do so when I get back.
Also on Facebook is the 28th Infantry Battalion Association page - 28 Cn Cois
A lot of the members would have served with "Cass" and have fond memories of him.
I suggest you give the group a look up and post a message there.
 
Hi Paul,
just seen your post, I am just about to travel up to Bucharest from my home in Transylvania for the St. Patrick's Day Function,
so I dont have time to give you any info before I depart, but, will certainly do so when I get back.
Also on Facebook is the 28th Infantry Battalion Association page - 28 Cn Cois
A lot of the members would have served with "Cass" and have fond memories of him.
I suggest you give the group a look up and post a message there.
Thanks a million, and thanks for passing on the Facebook page I'll definitely be having a look!
Safe travels & enjoy the weekend.👏
 

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