Every man and woman that ever stood on a stage north of the border was a hero. Night after night they fought the forces of division and suspicion. They destroyed the work of those who sought to drive a wedge between the people. They brought people together. They were called “showbands”.

Sadly, a few brave musicians died in this heroic endeavour. Among them were our friends and colleagues; Tony Geraghty, Fran O’Toole and Brian McCoy. We, who survived, are immensely proud to have shared their final hours. We miss them more than words can ever say. Sometimes only the music can give us comfort.

It is our fervent wish that lessons will be learned from such insane events. We hope mankind will soon realise the futility of violence.

Click to read: Speech by the Taoiseach, Mr. Bertie Ahern T.D. at the Hugh Lane Gallery, Parnell Square on Monday 10 December 2007 on the occasion of the unveiling of a Memorial to the members of the Miami Showband who were murdered on 31 July 1975.

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