Ian Ogle: Thousands mourn ‘brutally murdered’ Belfast father-of-two

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A Belfast community worker “brutally murdered” yards from his home died with “unparalleled bravery” while protecting those he thought were in danger.

Ian Ogle, 45, was attacked and stabbed 11 times while praying with a priest last Sunday near Cluan Place, east Belfast, where he lived.

The father-of-two, a member of East Belfast Protestant Boys Flute Band, passed away while his son Ryan was with him.

There has been speculation that people associated with the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) were responsible for the killing.

Thousands of mourners, including members of the band, attended his funeral at the Covenant Love Church on Albertbridge Road, where pastor Kevin Sambrook, who prayed with Mr Ogle moments before his death, said he willingly gave his life for others.

“Savage, brutal, barbaric were words used to described Ian’s violent murder but I want to introduce words that described Ian that night – courageous, fearless and utterly selfless,” he said.

“We stood and prayed together for a while before he thanked me and told me he prayed the Lord’s Prayer every day and I knew that.

“Moments later Ian was attacked and brutally murdered and I found myself kneeling beside him as he lay dying, praying that Lord would be with him.

“Ian sadly passed away while his son Ryan was with him and others from Cluan Place arrived to give help as well as (daughter) Toni and (wife) Vera. How shocking and traumatic it was for them.

“Ian met his end with unparalleled bravery and died protecting those he believed to be danger without a second thought for his own safety. Ian willingly gave his life for others while others willingly took it from him,” he added.

Mr Ogle’s daughter, Toni Johnston Ogle, joked how she had not prepared a written tribute because one of the qualities her father gave to her was “I could talk the leg off a stool”.

“Me and Ryan are going to be lost without him, but we have to be there for my mummy. He was her first love and last,” she said.

Two men aged 40 and 37 were arrested on Monday by detectives investigating the murder, bringing the total number of people arrested to 11.

(c) Sky News 2019: Ian Ogle: Thousands mourn ‘brutally murdered’ Belfast father-of-two

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