Northern Ireland

Seamus Ruddy's sister gives thanks after human remains find

Anne Morgan outside Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris
Image caption Speaking outside the Notre Dame Cathedral in Rouen on Sunday Anne Morgan said the discovery was "bittersweet"

The sister of one of the Disappeared victims, Seamus Ruddy, has attended Mass in France to give thanks for those who have helped to find his body.

Mr Ruddy, 32, was murdered and secretly buried in 1985 by the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA).

His sister, Anne Morgan, said her life has "completely changed" since investigators discovered human remains near Rouen on Saturday.

Formal identification has yet to take place.

Image caption A forensic tent has been placed at the site where human remains were found in Foret Domaniale

Anne Morgan was the only member of her family to travel to the search site in France.

Who were the Disappeared?

Search for Disappeared begins in France

Before attending Mass at the Church of Joan of Arc in Rouen on Sunday morning, she said she would "be thinking of family" who are at home.

"I'll also be thinking of those who have been here looking after this site at Pont-de-l'Arche, and all of the people who have spent a lot of time helping us to find Seamus".

Image caption Anne Morgan and her husband visited the search site on Friday

Mr Ruddy was working as an English teacher in Paris when he went missing.

He was one of 16 people known as the Disappeared who were murdered and secretly buried by republicans during Northern Ireland's Troubles.

The INLA admitted responsibility for the killing 10 years after Mr Ruddy's death.

'Life changing'

Anne was on her way home when the news broke on Saturday morning, but she has now been able to extend her stay in France.

"I was leaving on the train and I was despondent and I thought that I would never come back to Rouen.

"Within the hour I was back in the centre again and things had completely changed - my life had completely changed."

Image copyright Pacemaker
Image caption Seamus Ruddy has been missing for 32 years

She added: "It was like a bitter sweet moment when you're very happy but also very very sad.

"Sad that all of these years, 32 of them, have gone past and we weren't able to find him - but now it looks as if we may have found him."

This latest search began in France on Tuesday after new information was passed to the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims Remains (ICLVR).

Image copyright RTÉ
Image caption Seamus Ruddy's siblings - Terry, Gertie and Kieran - gathered around their parents's grave on Saturday

Other members of the family were at home in Newry, County Down, when the discovery was confirmed.

They have said they remain conscious that there are three other families of Disappeared victims who have yet to find their loved ones.

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