Inequality feeds culture of criminality
They set up a Facebook page for Philly O’Toole after he disappeared on Monday, January 7th. He had left his home in Arklow at about 5pm that day and, according to a neighbour who lived beside his family in Fassaroe, a working class housing estate in Bray, he probably had come back to Fassaroe to visit his partner and seven-month-old son.
He was taking a chance in doing so, for he knew his life was in danger from a criminal gang.
A message was posted on the Facebook page on January 17th saying Philly’s family were appealing to anyone with any information to contact the Garda. Another message read: “If anyone seen Philly’s car parked on the Dargle Road or seen it on Monday the 7th/Tuesday 8th, please contact Philly’s family or gardaí. Any information, no matter how small, might help.”
A photograph of his BMW coupé was posted on the site. Several people posted messages: “May he find his way home”; “Bless ya all”; “Wishing Philip had a very happy birthday, may he return home soon”; “It’s heart-breaking”; and “Noah’s lantern for daddy”.
On Thursday last there was a message reading: “We are holding an organised search in Trooperstown wood on Saturday morning at 9am. Meeting in the car park. Would be grateful for as many people as possible to help out.”
Other messages gave directions. The following day: “Search for tomorrow has been cancelled. Thank you to everyone for the kind messages, support and help.”
There were more messages: “Me and J will miss you loads. You done a lot for everyone.” Another person wrote: “My heart goes out to both Philly and his family. May heaven be his bed.”
Facebook recorded 442 people liked the page on the day the page was closed down.
Philly O’Toole’s body had been found in Trooperstown wood in Rathdrum last Friday morning. He had been shot in the head.
Notice of his funeral appeared on the rip.iewebsite. It read: “Aged 33 years, to the inexpressible grief of his parents Brendan and Irene, sister Lorraine, partner Jennifer, son Noah, brother-in-law David, niece Hannah and nephew Zac. He will be sadly missed by his loving family, relatives and friends.”
His requiem Mass was held in St Peter’s Church, Little Bray, on Tuesday and he was buried in Springfield Cemetery, Killarney Road, Bray.
In a report compiled by Bray Local Task Force in 2001, it was recorded that Fassaroe was one of the most deprived areas in the country. It was designated among the Rapid areas for special regeneration.
Two years later even a Fianna Fáil councillor, Joe Behan, later a TD, was complaining about how Fassaroe had lost out. The Bray Town Development Plan 2011 to 2017 implicitly acknowledges the failure of the promised regeneration, although there were some improvements.