The launch of The Long Road Home in Lisnaskea, County Fermanagh

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Photo by Donnie Phair

Michelle Gildernew, MP, MLA, Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, who launched the Long Road Home in Lisnaskea. On Mary's left is Stephen Huggett, Chairman of Fermanagh District Council.

Photos of the launch of The Long Road Home in Castlerea, County Roscommon, on 11 September 2010

All photos taken by Liam Reynolds.
Four book launch atendees
Cllr. Paschal Fitzmaurice, Mayor Luke Flanagan, Mary Geraghty and Cllr. Michael Mulligan
Mary Geraghty and her book
Mary Geraghty at the book launch
Jo O’Donoghue (publisher, Londubh Books), Morgan Llywelyn (who launched the book) and Mary Geraghty
Winie Mullen and Mary Geraghty
Marie Page enjoying Mary’s book

Mary Geraghty (Lynch) on the Gerry Ryan Show, 2 February 2007

Hear how an on-air conversation with the late Gerry Ryan encouraged Mary Geraghty to start writing The Long Road Home, which will be published by Londubh Books in September 2010.

Mary Geraghty (Lynch) tells the story of that morning in February 2007 when fate intervened in the form of Gerry Ryan:

On 2 February 2007, I was driving to Claremorris, County Mayo to see a psychotherapist who specalised in trauma. I was listening to Gerry Ryan talking to a man [Shane Dunphy] who was describing what would happen to the children – who had been held hostage the night before in Dublin, in yet another ‘tiger kidnapping’ – if they did not receive immediate help. The man spoke of the effects the children could suffer later in life – nightmares, flashbacks and inability to function normally and said that addictions like workaholism, alcoholism and drug addiction were also possible consequences. I was intrigued as I had suffered and was still suffering from a lot of these symptoms. It was when Gerry said, ‘We have no experience of this in this country,’ that I felt compelled to phone the show. I pulled my car to the side of the road and called the programme’s number. When the researcher answered I said. ‘My name is Mary Geraghty, I am forty-eight years old and I just heard Gerry say that that we have no experience of this happening before in this country, I am from this country and I have experienced this living here.’

‘What happened to you?’ she asked.

I replied, ‘My family were held hostage for four hours by the British army and police when I was fifteen years old and I am only now able to deal with it. Tell Gerry to make sure those children get help and save them from the life I had to live.’

She asked, ‘Would you talk to Gerry?’ and I said, ‘Yes’.

They called me back a few minutes later and I was on the radio for nearly forty minutes including advertisement breaks.

Because of this conversation with Gerry I was strong enough to face more of the brutal, hidden memories of life in the North in the 1970s. I eventually had the courage to write a book about how trauma affected my life.

Mary’s book, The Long Road Home, will be published by Londubh Books in September 2010.

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