December 2016        

A young man named Frank Conroy

Michael Healy

The Frank Conroy Commemoration Committee have made a video called A Young Man Named Frank Conroy, written by Paul McCormack and filmed by Stephen Connelly. It can be seen on Youtube.
     The film was produced for the eightieth anniversary of the death of Frank Conroy, a native of Kilcullen, Co. Kildare, who was killed on 28 December 1936, fighting with the International Brigade defending the Spanish Republic against Franco fascism.

He was born in Kilcullen town, where a hill goes up and a hill goes down,
And his eyes were blue and his hair was brown, a young man named Frank Conroy;
It was nineteen thirty six in Spain, he went to fight in freedom’s name,
And he never did come home again, a young man named Frank Conroy.

Now I don’t know was he afraid, but he joined the International Brigade,
And he went to the people’s aid, a young man named Frank Conroy.
Three days after Christmas day, on a hillside far, far away,
Outnumbered and outgunned, they say, was a young man named Frank Conroy,

Chorus
Men and woman heard the call and went to fight for good and all,
And in the ranks there standing tall, a young man named Frank Conroy.

Shells rained down on that hill, men would die, blood would spill.
Conroy fought—he’s fighting still—a hero named Frank Conroy.
But Conroy’s machine-gun jammed; Christ! he cried, Christ, we’re dammed.
He died that day in a foreign land, a young man named Frank Conroy.

Two bullets struck him, so they said, a shrapnel wound to his head,
On the hillside there, lying dead, a young man named Frank Conroy.
No mother’s tears fell on his grave, but his name is carved among the brave,
His life for freedom’s call he gave, a young man named Frank Conroy.

In a lonely grave across the sea Frank Conroy sleeps there peacefully,
For he died for true democracy, a young man named Frank Conroy.
In Kilcullen town the wind was still as news crept up and down the hill,
That Frank died in Spain and it was God’s will, a young man named Frank Conroy.

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