Mrs Brown star weeps recalling how Cairo Gang murdered grandfather
The star of Mrs Brown’s Boys Brendan O’Carroll was reduced to tears after being shown the gun that could have been used to murder his grandfather.
The Irish comedian was filming an episode of Who Do You Think You Are? for the BBC. The show traces the ancestry of popular actors and sport stars.
O’Carroll has become a much-loved performer since he rose to fame as the foul-mouthed Irish mammy in his comedy Mrs Brown’s Boys.
He was invited to trace back his family history with the help of researchers at the BBC.
During the show, O’Carroll revealed that his grandfather was murdered by the Cairo Gang during the Irish War of Independence. The war was fought by an army of Irish republicans led by Michael Collins, against the British Army, who were assisted by a unit of secret agents called the Cairo Gang.
During the filming of Who Do You Think You Are? O’Carroll told the chilling tale about his grandfather’s death. He revealed that his grandfather was a known republican and was targeted by the Cairo Gang. He was dragged from his shop along with his nine-year old son (O’Carroll’s father) and ordered to kneel down in the street. O’Carroll’s grandfather was then questioned about the whereabouts of other known republicans to which he replied: “I don’t know, and if I knew I wouldn’t tell you!”
The Gang then asked if he was a member of Sínn Féin to which Peter replied: “Born and I’ll die.”
O’Carroll was visibly upset as he revealed the brutal manner of his grandfather’s death: “They said to my grandfather ‘then die’ and they shot him three times – once in the head, once in the chest and once in the stomach. And then they shot my father and left him for dead.”
O’Carroll’s father, Gerard was taken to hospital and survived the incident.
The producers of the show then showed O’Carroll a gun that was the type used by the Cairo Gang at the time, and could well be the one used to kill his grandfather. The comedian was later shown a photograph of the man the historians suspected had carried out the murder. He was understandably overwhelmed and broke down in tears.
O’Carroll has also written and stars in Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie which was released in the summer of 2014. Watch the trailer for Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie below.
Did you know?Despite funerals being the saddest of occasions, they often produce wonderfully warm and life-affirming poems and blessings. The Irish have a great tradition for funeral poems and blessings. Find out more.
Have you heard about…Some of the most popular surnames in Ireland have histories that go back hundreds, even thousands of years. Several originated from the ancient Irish clans that ruled various parts of the country over the centuries. Find out the stories of some of the most common names in Ireland.
What about this…Brian Boru is known as the last High King of Ireland and is even credited with seeing off the Vikings who had terrorised the Irish for over 200 years. Find out more.