VIDEO: An emotional Sean Quinn fights back tears at rally
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Sean Quinn speaking at a pro-Quinn rally in Ballyconnell last night. Photo by John McVitty.
Patricia Quinn in tears as husband Sean speaks at rally.
Thousands attended the pro-Quinn rally in Ballyconnell tonight.
The former businessman makes a surprise appearance at Ballyconnell event
FIGHTING back tears, former businessman Sean Quinn made a surprise appearance at a rally held in his honour last night and told the thousands that attended: "I apologise, I could get emotional".
The streets of Ballyconnell were packed for the pro-Quinn event, organised by Concerned Irish Citizens and guest speakers included Father Brian D'arcy and a number of GAA personalities, including; Mickey Harte, Jarlath Burns and Colm O'Rourke.
Sitting on the stage throughout, Mr. Quinn's daughter Colette, welled up at various points too, as she watched the invited guests pay tribute to her father.
"Quinn was a man of his word and trusted others. He was wrong. He was not dealing with an honest group... Sean Quinn killed the oxygen of violence by bringing jobs and with jobs came peace," said Father D'Arcy.
"Tonight we are coming together and like the founders of the GAA there is no power like the power of the people," Jarlath Burns told the crowd.
"Nobody should take any solace in the public humiliation of the Quinn family. You never kick a man when he is down," said GAA's Colm O'Rourke .
Tyrone manager Mickey Harte said: "Evil prevails when good people do nothing. It is payback time for Sean Quinn".
Then with her voice crackling, Mr. Quinn's daughter Colette took to the platform after being handed a letter of support on behalf of the local community.
She said: "We thank you all for everything you have done for the family in the last two years".
But the biggest surprise of all was the appearance of Sean Quinn himself, a man who has remained very much in the background over the years.
Here he was, baring his soul and as he scanned the sea of people below him, many holding placards, many chanting his name, his voice trembled and he said: "I want to thank you all for the support".
His wife Patricia, sitting watching him, wept as he thanked his family, including Peter Darragh Quinn.
"I would like to say a special word of thanks to young Peter who is getting a bad reputation this weather. Peter has been a huge supporter of mine and the family.... the Quinns will continue to be the Quinns and we will stand by each other".
He then went on to say how he hoped "justice would prevail" in the long term and how he hoped business would continue in the area with or without his involvement.
See our video of Sean Quinn's address below and for full coverage of the rally, latest developments, photographs and analysis check out this week's Impartial Reporter.
This article appeared in Impartial Reporter 29 Jul 12
Have your say. Post a comment on this article.
Jul 30, 02:39
Itís a bad state of affairs when such a short-sighted Irish government reduces one of the country's most successful business men to this emotional state. They are not only content on ruining his business, which has provided thousands of stable Irish jobs throughout the years, but they are now proceeding to tear his family apart to quash any chance of the Quinns getting back to the position where they were unfairly dismissed from. It is an absolute travesty that the Irish and UK media has tarnished the Quinn name in such a short space of time and has now portrayed him and his devoted family as criminals. It is clear to be seen that Sean and his family have been used as scape goats to deflect the attention away from the monumental failings within the government and not to mention the scandalous activities which took place in the now State owned bank, AIB.
They were quick to bite the hand that feeds but with the people's continued support Sean Quinn will overcome this injustice and fight another day.
Ryan Lunney - One of many loyal supporters
Recommend? Yes 74 No 115
Jul 30, 10:14
He played his hand and lost now he reaps what he sowed, hardly anyone's fault but his own. As for the statement the Quinn's stick together, this doesn't ring true when his nephew has not got the guts to face the music and leaves his cousin to serve time on his own, a real class act. It's Irish tax payers money they are trying to hide and keep why should they not be made to pay, if it were any ordinary citizen without the connections that Quinn had they would get life for trying to steal that amount of money from the Irish state. They thought they were untouchable and above the law but the fox is always caught in the end.
Recommend? Yes 114 No 55
Jul 30, 10:32
i couldnt get to ballyconnel last night but im delighted to see the support
has any one got a link to the "factsheet" mickey harte referred to ?
also is letter of support from Michael O leary been published
keep the head up Sean
Recommend? Yes 34 No 106
Jul 30, 23:39
He's bankrupt and continues to defy a court order by deliberately putting half a billion of our money out of the tax payers' hands. Those thousands of people who turned out were giving the proverbial middle finger to every other tax payer in Ireland who suffers repeated cuts to their income and public services.
Recommend? Yes 99 No 14
Aug 2, 08:04
How anyone can have sympathy for this chancer is beyond me. He tried to ride the system and it backfired. How many of these 'wonderful jobs' he created were unionised? Him and his kind brought this country to its knees and in these recessionary times it is at least some comfort that he is finally being made suffer.
As a regular GAA spectator I must say that the figures endorsing Mr Quinn need to take a long hard look at themselves. Their sympathy should be with the ordinary match going public who are struggling to even afford ticket prices rather than this fallen billionare who screwed us all.
Recommend? Yes 8 No 4