Vigils are taking place across the country this weekend as Ireland and the LGBTQ+ community are in shock following the tragic killings of Aidan Moffitt and Michael Snee.
People wishing to show solidarity with the families of Aidan, 41, and Michael, 58, and the LGBTQ+ community are encouraged to attend the vigils as the men’s loved ones wish to remember who they were before their tragic deaths .
A vigil in Sligo will be held at 6pm on April 15 at Town Hall. Dublin will hold a vigil at Dáil Éireann at the same time and date.
In Galway, those wishing to remember Aidan and Michael are asked to gather in Eyre Square at 7pm on April 16th.
Smaller events are also held across the country to accommodate people who may want to pay their respects but can’t make it to a city.
Karen Power, Councilor for the Fingal Green Party, will hold a vigil in Skerries, Co Dublin on April 15 at 6pm for those unable to make the vigil at Dáil Éireann.
“I was completely devastated by the events of the last week and it really hit me that we didn’t get as far as we need to, not even close,” she said.
“I can’t imagine the fear that people in the LGBTQ+ community are feeling right now and I wanted to do something small for the people here in Skerries to show their respect for Michael and Aidan and also show our solidarity with our neighbors , with our friends, with our family, with our members of the LGBTQ+ community.
“I have two young children so I wouldn’t make it to the Dáil so I think it’s really important and I’ve spoken to a few people here who would like to go in but at 6pm it’s not suitable, right after work and to get in on time.
“So it facilitates a path for people who want to show their support and respect.”
Sligo Pride said it was shocked and devastated and while it stressed the importance of personal safety, a spokesman said the organization wanted to stress that the problem lies with the perpetrators and not the victims.
“A hate crime isn’t just an isolated act of violence, it’s a guide to an entire community saying, ‘You’re not welcome,'” they said.
“We think it’s important to stand up and show that this is just not acceptable.
“Hate crime laws are being developed and we need a renewed push from the public to support this, but it is important to remember that post-prisonment does not restore the life lost.
“It shouldn’t take that much heartbreak for people to see what’s happening right before their eyes.
“All we can do is try to prevent the next tragedy, and for that we need everyone who is actively involved.”
Blaine Gaffney said his close friend Aidan Moffitt should be remembered for being a great person, not for the horrors that befell him.
“It’s very important to remember him for who he was and not what happened to him,” Mr Gaffney said.
“Aidan was someone who made the world light up whenever you were at this company.
“He was a very prominent businessman in the town of Sligo. He was someone who was very involved in political circles.
“Anyone in their social bubble would know the character that they were. He was very outgoing, very intelligent, very, very smart, someone who was very caring and has proven that in the community over the years.
“You know, he was just a good friend, a really, really good friend, and it’s very hard to try to come to terms with what happened.”
Michelle Gilmartin, Aidan’s neighbor, said he always had a big smile on his face.
In a social media post, she said: “It has been a pleasure to have you as a good neighbor and friend in Cartron Heights.
“You always had a big smile on your face and a big wave every time we met.
“I will never forget your witty sense of humor, the good political debates we had and your friendly manner.”
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/vigils-to-be-held-across-the-country-this-weekend-to-remember-aidan-moffitt-and-michael-snee-41555019.html This weekend, vigils are to be held nationwide in memory of Aidan Moffitt and Michael Snee