25 November 2005

Partner in plea over mystery Ulsterman

Belfast Telegraph

By Ben Lowry
25 November 2005

THE partner of a dead man believed to be from Northern Ireland has appealed for information on his background ahead of his burial in America next week in a pauper's grave.

The man had told Patti Maloney, who lived with him in Kentucky for the last two years of his life, that his name was Sean Angus Donnelly (45), but she never saw documentation to this effect.

The Belfast Telegraph has been passed pictures of Mr Donnelly by Jefferson County Coroner's Office as part of the bid to identify him.

The paper revealed on Saturday that Mr Donnelly, thought to come from Omagh, has been lying embalmed since he died of natural causes in Louisville on October 29, because no next of kin have been located.

"That is what he told me - Omagh, in Co Tyrone," Ms Maloney said.

Mr Donnelly, who will be given an indigent's burial on Monday, had also told Ms Maloney that he was a stone mason. But he did not work when they were together, because of a past gunshot wound that had been inflicted to his right leg.

"The injury was like from the kneecap down. It was down the whole side of his calf," Ms Maloney recalled. "He always said he was shot at one of the Army checkpoints in Belfast."

She added: "He always said he was an Irish nationalist but I was not entirely sure what that meant. He was very political, that is the way he talked all the time."

No-one from Northern Ireland has contacted the coroners since the Belfast Telegraph article.

Ms Maloney said: "I am thinking he maybe came over here under a different name. But he stuck by that name (Sean Angus Donnelly) the whole time."

Mr Donnelly - who was around 6ft tall, spoke with a "thick" Irish accent and had a Playboy tattoo on his left arm - told Ms Maloney that he was an only child.

Anyone with information can contact the coroners on (502) 574 3506.

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