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Dublin: 23°C Monday 8 August 2022

'I will never, ever, ever, forgive that man': Bobby Ryan's daughter on dealing with her father's murder

Michelle Ryan and her brother Robert moved to Cork after their father went missing in Tipperary.

Image: Leah Farrell

THE DAUGHTER OF Bobby Ryan who was murdered by Patrick Quirke said she will “never ever” forgive him for taking her father away.

A jury of 12 people found Quirke guilty of the murder of Ryan – known by locals in Tipperary as DJ ‘Mr Moonlight’ – on Wednesday.

Quirke had pleaded not guilty but was sentenced to life imprisonment by a judge after a jury delivered a majority verdict of 10 to 2.

The murder trial lasted 13 weeks and went down as the longest of its kind in the state.

A few days on from the verdict, Michelle Ryan said her father was “the absolute life and soul of our world,” adding that she would “never, ever ever, forgive that man for taking our world away from us”.

Speaking on the Marian Finucane show on RTÉ Radio One, she said: “I don’t think there is any such thing as normal left for us – we’re just under eight years of having our world turned absolutely upside down and inside out.

“There’s no returning back to normal for us and looking forward… I just hope and pray that someday, the justice we got for daddy will bring us a sense of peace in our lives but at the minute it’s not looking like that.

“Justice is done but as far as we’re concerned, we’re never going to have our father back.”

She spoke of the challenging road ahead for her own children at explaining what happened to their grandad in years to come.

“How do you explain the cruel circumstances – you just can’t. There are six grandchildren and there was no protecting them.

“We shielded them to the best that we could and then when the court case started getting the media attention, we knew they definitely would be seeing pictures of ‘Granda Bob’ in the newspapers in the shops.

“And people mean well, they really do, but we couldn’t even go into the shops when we had our kids with us – they were coming over.”

Love rivals

Details of the DJ’s life, circumstances surrounding his death, as well as an affair involving the two men and Mary Lowry, were laid out in the court room.

Ryan’s daughter said she had warned her father to walk away from the love-triangle but he had later met with Lowry and Quirke in a local pub.

“I said, ‘daddy come on, at your age you don’t need that – it’s not healthy – cut your ties from it… You need to grab a hold of this situation’.

“He rang me to say he was meeting Mary Lowry and Patrick Quirke in Hayes. He said ‘I’ll go in and see what has to be said’.

“He rang me after, and told me that Pat Quirke had apologised for his carry on. They shook hands and that was it. I said Daddy please stop letting these people walk all over you.


The circumstances around Bobby Ryan’s death encouraged Michelle and brother Robert to leave Tipperary in the years following their father’s disappearance.

“After Daddy had gone missing, Tipperary got too hard for myself and Robert – [we] decided to move to Cork,” she said. 

“I was getting into [a] frame of mind, I was driving out to the woods. Every spare minute Robert had, he was driving looking for him.

“I will never move back to Tipperary even though we have wonderful precious memories of daddy there,” she added.

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