Friday 28 October 2016

Fighter sounded Asgard bugle and battled at Four Courts

Rebel stories

Patrick Hugh Holahan
Patrick Hugh Holahan

Patrick Hugh Holahan was born in 1897 and grew up at Rutland Cottages in Ballybough.

His father served in the British Army in India and Afghanistan. In 1909, along with his older brother Garry, Paddy joined Na Fianna Eireann. 

In 1914 at the Howth Gun Running he sounded a bugle (which he’s carrying in the picture on the left) when the Asgard appeared.

As Easter 1916 approached he was inducted into the IRB and informed of the plans for the Rising. 

He participated in the attack on the Magazine Fort in the Phoenix Park and then joined the 1st battalion under Cmdt Ned Daly in the Four Courts Garrison. 

He participated in an attack on Broadstone train station, refusing to retreat until he assisted one of his company who was isolated. He was later appointed captain of his company.

With the help of the Capuchins he negotiated a truce with Lieut Col Taylor on Easter Saturday.

When he received written notice from Pearse of the surrender he told his men it was “the hardest task” they were called upon to perform.

Paddy later fought in the War of Independence, leading the raid on Collinstown Aerodrome, and fought on the anti-Treaty side in the Civil War. 

During the Emergency he was appointed commandant of the 26th battalion that brought together men from both sides of the Civil War to help heal the bitter wounds of that time.

Later he was OC of the Construction Corps.

Patrick married Johanna Holahan in 1920 (she had joined Cumann na mBan after the 1916 Rising) and they had five children together.

Paddy was a man of high principle who believed that his word was his bond and that “a job worth doing was worth doing well”. 

In later years he was in charge of the Office of Public Works in the Phoenix Park. He died in 1946.

Details submitted by  Ciaran Holohan (grandson)

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