independent

Monday 20 November 2017

Pte. Andy Wickham memorial service

U.N. Veterans, family members and serving members of the defence forces, will be in Barntown on Sunday for the annual Mass and wreath laying for Private Andy Wickham, killed in action in the Congo on 1961.Andy Wickham was killed along with his commanding officer, Lieutenant Paddy O'Riordan, in the first burst of gunfire during an engagement with Katangan forces at Elizabethvill

U.N. Veterans, family members and serving members of the defence forces, will be in Barntown on Sunday for the annual Mass and wreath laying for Private Andy Wickham, killed in action in the Congo on 1961.

Andy Wickham was killed along with his commanding officer, Lieutenant Paddy O'Riordan, in the first burst of gunfire during an engagement with Katangan forces at Elizabethville.

The men were killed during the final assault on a strategic railway tunnel at 6 a.m. on December 16 when they came under heavy fire from the gendarmerie and Katangan forces in railway carriages. Sgt. Patrick Mulcahy died on the same day from wounds suffered during the fighting on the previous Thursday. All were members of A Company, 36th Battalion.

Andy Wickham left a widow, Eleanor, and six young children. One of them, also named Andy, is an airman with the Air Corps, based at Baldonnel.

Members of the Oireachtas, Wexford County Council, Wexford Borough Council, as well as some of Andy's former comrades in arms are due to attend, as well soldiers from 10th Battalion, members U.N. Veterans, ONE and the naval service.

The memorial and wreath laying will take place after 10.30 a.m. Mass at Barntown's Pugin Church and will be followed by refreshments in Taghmon. All are welcome.

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