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Wednesday 16 August 2017

Sentenced to death for Quays attacks

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Patrick Joseph Kelly
Patrick Joseph Kelly

Patrick Joseph Kelly was born in 1896. The youngest of four, he grew up in Lusk.

He joined the Volunteers in 1914 and took part in the Howth gun-running in 1915.

On Easter Monday he mobilised in Lusk, along with his two brothers, and was detailed to go to the GPO.

On arriving he was sent on to the Mendicity Institution on Usher's Quay, under the command of Sean Heuston. Their orders were to attack British troops coming from the Royal Barracks (Collins Barracks) to the Four Courts.

Patrick and 25 others held the position until noon on Wednesday. At that time, surrounded by 400 Royal Fusiliers, Heuston surrendered.

At a courts martial on Thursday Patrick Kelly was sentenced to death. On Monday May 8 Patrick's commanding officer Sean Heuston was executed. Patrick Kelly's sentence was commuted to three years penal servitude. He was imprisoned Britain before being released in 1917.

His brothers Matthew and Joseph fought at Ashbourne.

Patrick Kelly later fought in the War of Independence. He became an electrician, with two shops in Lusk, married and had six children.

Patrick Kelly died in March 1945. He is buried in Lusk.

Details submitted by grand-daughter Helen Kelly

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