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BrendanT1993

Martin McGuinness: Sinn Féin politician dies aged 66

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Martin McGuinness - a personal memory

Recalling this morning a meeting in his office at Stormont Castle in the summer of 2009.

I can only speak personally about that, and not about his past in the IRA.

At the time a number of us in the LGBT Sector requested a meeting with the then Joint Ministers. It was Martin McGuinness who readily agreed to meet us.

It was a good meeting with a special advisor from the First Minister, then Peter Robinson, attending to take notes.

I was struck by Martin's personal warmth and also his quick grasp of facts, information and opinions. As the subject matter was somewhat sensitive involving homophobic remarks made by the First Minister's wife, I was struck by his careful and respectful engagement with us that day.

As we were leaving, he shook hands with each of us and when my turn came, he said, "Brendan, it was good meeting you" accompanied by a scratch to the head and a chuckle as he recalled my real name.

Incidently, I had my first encounter with that special advisor who then went on to become an MLA, and because of a conversation on the stairs of Stormont Castle, we have been friends ever since.

I'm sad this morning at his passing. I know and do appreciate the feelings of those affected by his earlier years, but I must recall how I found him, and that was as a warm and charismatic politician whose leadership in these peaceful times will have left a strong and lasting impression.

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Hi Brendan. Don't know if we have spoke before but hi anyway. Its hard to come out with something like that isn't it? You know youll be jumped on. Yes I knew his son and stayed in his apartment in San Francisco. I don't join in politics on here so no adding more but applaud you for saying what you feel. Rightly or wrongly, each to their own. :)

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This is the thing, one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. Nelson Mandela was a terrorist too.

i don't think anyone should be killed for any cause but having grown up and seen how corrupt governments, police, army etc can be especially  in the seventies, I can see why some people did what they did.

but I can't forgive someone for killing anyone in cold blood including children, pregnant women etc for any cause. 

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