CAHERDANIEL PAYS TRIBUTE TO FAMOUS SON PAT QUINLAN
CAHERDANIEL will this weekend pay terrific tribute to one of its most famous sons, Colonel Pat Quinlan, who was Commanding Officer of Irish troops that came under attack during the famous Siege of Jadotville in 1961.
Commandant Quinlan led the A Company of the peacekeeping Irish Army’s 35th Infantry Battalion as it sustained an attack by local fighters in the Congo 56 years ago, but despite facing a fiveday assault, all 157 Irish soldiers survived the brutal ordeal.
Later retiring as a Colonel after more than 40 years’ service to the Irish Army, the Caherdaniel native passed away in 1997, but his legacy will now be preserved in his locality in the form of a bronze plaque embedded in Valentia Slate.
“Enda Kenny will have the honour of unveiling of this monument, made by Portmagee-based Holger Lonze,” Pat’s son Leo Quinlan told The Kerryman.
“The unveiling will take place at Com an Chiste Pass in Caherdaniel at midday on Saturday, but if the weather is inclement, the ceremony will move to the Sea Lodge Hotel in Waterville at 12.30pm.”
Outside of the unveiling, an Army Colour Party and Guard of Honour will also take place, with Brigadier General Patrick Flynn and a number of UN Veterans also set to intend – including a few who also fought in Jadotville.
Colonel Pat Quinlan was not the only Kerry man to fight in the famous battle, however, and with that in mind, his son Leo has called on relatives of Corporals Jimmy Lucey, Patrick Burke and Joe Relihan to join the day’s celebrations.
“I’d be very proud if we could have them with us,” he said. “Indeed, the event is open to absolutely everyone, and I hope a good crowd joins us for what will be an historic day.”
John Lynch and Noel Fealey (Kelliher Agri,Ballymullen) promoting smokeless fuel at Knocklee House for the homeless Castlemaine Road,Tralee on Frida. Also in photo are Mike Fleming and Martina O’Connor (Knocklee House)