Rainbow over Derry

Jerry, son of my cousin Jack, and brother of Chris, died of cancer a few years ago. He was active in Derry, working with the Quaker Peace Initiative. I went to his funeral, which was extremely well attended by the Catholics and Protestants who valued Jerry and the Project.
The occasion was a truly Irish affair, with Jerry’s huge frame on view in the front room of the family home. Jo, his wife, and children Sophie and Jack welcomed me, although I had not had contact with them for a long time. I had spoken to Jerry on the phone when I visited West Belfast a year or so earlier, before Jerry had known about his illness. He was then back in England with his father helping him to move from Isleworth to Aylesbury to be near to Chris and Margaret.
Jerry Tyrrell photo gallery
All the male relatives carried the coffin and Jerry was taken first to the College where a Quaker meeting remembered his life and work. I recounted the occasion when my friend and business partner in Vital Link, John Cockcroft, had phoned me to tell me that Jerry’s airline ticket to Belfast had been found at the Euston Road Meeting House. Did I know where he could be found? A call to his Father, Jack found him. No, he had not realised his ticket was missing, and yes, he would be picking it up.
Jerry’s book on Peer Group Mediation appeared posthumously. I left a copy with the Holy Land Trust in Bethlehem. This group organised a trip to Palestine/Israel this January (2004) when we found a deserted Bethlehem and a family in the Refugee Camp whose house had been demolished as a reprisal for a bombing incident in Jerusalem earlier the same day. More about that later.
rainbow over derry
The picture is a scene at Jerry’s burial at the cemetery above Derry looking down into the valley. The rainbow appeared just as Chris had read “I am in the wind”. It is a symbol of hope for Ireland and for Palestine/Israel.
The following links tell you more about The Quaker Peace Initiative and Jerry’s work with information about availability of his book.

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