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Stardust families “will reveal cause of fire” on 33rd anniversary

Antoinette Keegan, who survived the nightclub fire but lost her two sisters in the blaze, said they “need the truth after 33 years”.

Christine Keegan (left) and her daughter Antoinette Keegan, whose two sisters Mary and Martina perished in the fire.
Christine Keegan (left) and her daughter Antoinette Keegan, whose two sisters Mary and Martina perished in the fire.
Image: Julien Behal/PA Wire

FAMILIES WHO LOST their loved ones in the Stardust nightclub disaster said today that on its 33rd anniversary they will reveal what they believe was the cause of the fire.

Antoinette Keegan, who survived the blaze but tragically lost her two sisters in the fire, told TheJournal.ie “we need to have the truth after 33 years of what happened to our loved ones”.

The 1981 blaze led to the death of 48 people, while a further 214 were injured.

Keegan said that the families and survivors are also looking for the inquest to be reopened and for a verdict to be recorded.

They plan to hold another press conference on 31 January before a third conference on 14 February, when they will reveal what they say caused the fire. A candlelit vigil will also take place to mark the anniversary of the fire.

Keegan said that researchers working on behalf of the family have documents that show “where the fire originally started from”. She refuted suggestions that there was a glass wall at the nightclub.

The family members will meet with gardaí in Coolock garda station tomorrow, and with Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams this Wednesday.

Keegan described the fatal night, saying: “I seen the seat that was on fire. I also seen the whole thing coming down on top of us. I was screaming ‘oh God, help us” before I was knocked out by fumes and smoke.”

She said that the next thing she remembered was being outside and being told everyone was out of the club, while she asked where her sisters Mary and Martina were.

The survivors and family members have contacted the Taoiseach and Minister Alan Shatter, but were told that their diaries are full, said Keegan.

“We will get out there and lobby at every opportunity,” she concluded.

Read: Alan Shatter rules out any fresh inquiry into the Stardust disaster>

Read: 1982 Papers reveal changes recommended to fire service in aftermath of Stardust disaster>

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