Name: SHACKLETON Damian
Regiment / Service: 1st Battalion Scots Guards
Date of Death: 3rd August 1992
Cemetery: Whalley and Wiswell Cemetery
Grave / Memorial Ref: Plot 205
Address or Parish: Whalley and Billington.
Additional info: Damian was on his third tour and was killed (shot in the back) by an IRA sniper in Northern Ireland on the evening of Monday 3rd August. The actual attack took place on Duncairn Avenue, New Lodge, Belfast. He leaves a wife Susan and a four year old son, Christopher who live in the Todmorden area. His parents Mr Hugh Shackleton a well known local builder and his wife, Joan live on King Street, Whalley. IRA gunmen took over a Catholic house and held the resident family hostage and waited for the British and RUC mobile patrol to pass by. Damian was the 53rd person to die violently there this year so far. The service for Damian took place at English Martyr's Roman Catholic Church, Whalley. Guardsmen carried his coffin to his final resting place at Whalley and Wiswell Cemetery. An Army padre helped conduct the service which included a reading from the Book of Wisdom by the Commanding Officer of the 1st Battalion Scots Guardsmen, Lt. Colonel. Tim Spicer. RUC Officers also attended.Representing the Ribble Valley Borough Council were the Mayor and Mayoress, Councillor and Mrs John Travis along with environmental services senior officer, Mr David Morris. One of the mourners who attended was Nigel Evans M.P. for the Ribble Valley. Damian had attended St Augustine School in Billington.
An article dated 6th August, 1992 quotes a family member saying "That Damian liked the people of Ulster so much he was considering joining the RUC when his Army service was ending in eighteen months time. He had always wanted to do someting positive for the province and like everyone else wanted a solution found to end the killings."
Damian had celebrated his birthday on July 19th and had also enjoyed ceremonial duties and was said to have been the perfect soldier for such occasions as Trooping the Colour and Buckingham Palace guard duties. He had joined the 1st Battalion of the Scots Guards at the age of 17 soon after leaving St Augustine R.C. High School. He had been good at athletics particularly as a discuss competitor. He was also a keen footballer and played when on leave for Whalley FC or the village De Lacy pub team. He also took every opportunity to watch Blackburn Rovers. Damian's brother (Adam) aged 26, lives in Padiham with his wife, Cheryl. His grandfather, Harry Stant, formerly of Whalley, is also well known locally as a builder.
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