Volunteer Vice-Commandant Patrick Driscoll or O’Driscoll Jr

Volunteer Vice-Commandant Patrick Driscoll or O’Driscoll Jr (age about 24) of Mohanagh near Skibbereen (Mohanagh)

Date of incident: 7 Feb. 1921

Sources: Frank Neville’s WS 443, 11 (BMH); William Norris’s WS 595, 7 (BMH); Denis Collins’s WS 827, 13-14 (BMH); Timothy Warren’s WS 1275, 12 (BMH); Patrick O’Sullivan’s WS 1481, 8 (BMH); Rebel Cork’s FS, 207; Barry (1949, 1989), 97-98; Deasy (1973), 212-13; Last Post (1976), 79; Cork No. 5 Brigade Memorial, Bantry; http://person.ancestry.com/tree/18177262/person/28055559630/facts (accessed 9 May 2016).  


Note: Just before a planned IRA attack on a detachment of the King’s Liverpool Regiment in Skibbereen under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Percy Hudson, the bad news came of O’Driscoll’s death. He ‘had been killed accidently over the weekend while on protective duty,’ observed Liam Deasy, ‘and we arrived in time to make arrangements for the obsequies’. Tom Barry was an eyewitness to the tragedy. An IRA sentry going off duty was reciting his duties at Barry’s request for the benefit of O’Driscoll as the new sentry: ‘About halfway through his recital a shot rang out and Pat O’Driscoll swayed towards me. Catching him, I lowered him gently, but he was dead before I placed him on the ground. I turned to the man who had shot him. His face was a mask of consternation, and he dropped the Webley revolver. I spoke to him, but he could not answer, and then, with a moan, he too collapsed, for the man he had accidentally shot was his best friend. . . . It was unpleasant for me to feel that it was the presence of the column commander which had made the scout so nervous that unknowingly he had pressed the trigger and shot Pat O’Driscoll.’ See Barry (1949, 1989), 97-98.

Born at Mohanagh near Skibbereen in about 1897, O’Driscoll was the older son of Mohanagh farmer Patrick Driscoll Sr and his wife Mary. They were the parents in 1911 of seven living children (eight born), including five daughters and two sons, all of whom co-resided with them in that year. Patrick Driscoll Jr (aged 14 in 1911) later became the vice-commandant of the Skibbereen Battalion and was to have been in charge of the much-anticipated landing of a large supply of arms and ammunition from abroad at Squince Strand. He was buried in Skibbereen. His name appears on memorial of the Cork No. 5 Brigade in the middle of Bantry.

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