We travel back in time to Philip’s childhood, learning the history of his forbears, including their flight from sectarian conflict in the South in the Springtime of 1921, and the chilling murder later, of their neighbours in the notorious Pearson brother's incident.
This extraordinary true story all began on the 7th December 1971, with an explosion, at the garage business of Philip Coogan during the midst of the Northern troubles. It sets in motion a trail of events that leaves Philip and his family struggling to survive in an increasingly hostile environment, the distress and frustration experienced by Philip and family had a pro founding effect on their health.
In his young life while at Mullinahoe school Ardboe, he had a yearlong battle with TB, had a near-death experience and a dramatic vision of hell and heaven. On his sick bed, he receives the last rights of extreme unction. After his unbelievable recovery, while walking reading a prayer book, beside Cluntoe Aerodrome Ardboe, he sees an apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and resolves to serve God by becoming a Priest.
Been determined to rebuild his garage, Philip is frustrated by the planning authorities, and those who told him they would see him run out of town. Philip, his wife Patricia and children, decided to flee South of the border to Roscommon, renting a dilapidated old cottage, and in a minor image of his grandfather’s flight North after the Easter Rising.
Philip over the coming months suffered anxiety and nightmares from the explosion and fire, and the many attempts of assassinations by the Shankill Road butchers and others. 1976 was admitted to a psychiatric hospital with post-traumatic stress. ‘The Donaghadee saga’ finally ended in 1996, by compulsory purchase order, when he was offered £120 by Ards Borough Council for a seaside site whose real value ran into tens of thousands.
Philip after a visit to Knock Shrine, had his health restored. A large ...