The Keeley Chronicles PART 20

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 20 Contents
Chapter 53: Time Machine
Postscript: Glasgow Central 1988 (A film by Barry Coward)
Acknowledgments for Part 20

 

Chapter 53: Time Machine

thumbnail (4)

Passing Through Air: Glasgow Central, ground floor. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

I’m landing back in this year
Did I ever move?
Did I disappear?

If I could move through time
I’d go back and put it right

Ride – ‘Time Machine’

 

Although I’m Irish, and there are many close links between the Republic of Ireland and Scotland, I had somehow never been there before. I had been to the other ‘Home Nations’ of England, Wales and Northern Ireland many times but never Scotland. When I learned that one of my favourite bands, The House of Love, were set to embark on their first UK tour in five years, and that there would be no Irish date, I resolved to cross the water to see them. Having scanned through the six tour dates, I realised that the only date I would be able to travel over for that wouldn’t clash with my work schedule back in Dublin would be the concert in Glasgow on Thursday November 8th. Having never been to Scotland before and wanting to rectify that made it more appealing. However in the back of my mind there was another, more meaningful reason to go there. For I knew that Glasgow was one of the places Inga had passed through on what turned out to be the last day of her life, April 6th 1988. Due to her hectic schedule that day, which involved near-constant travel, I was aware that she had barely seen any of Glasgow, having only gotten to spend approximately ten minutes walking through the city as she made her way from Queen Street station (where she had disembarked from a train) to Central Station where she had to catch her next train connection, one that would take her to Stranraer, a crucial link in the chain of catastrophe that led to her boarding the Galloway Princess and which would later that night culminate in her murder virtually upon arrival in Northern Ireland.

Once I’d arrived in Glasgow city centre, I resolved to ramble around without the use of a map and just see where I ended up. After roughly an hour of wandering around I suddenly caught sight of Glasgow Central Station. A huge, imposing-looking building replete with a large archway through which traffic passes, Glasgow Central is the principal mainline rail terminus in the city and is protected as a category ‘A’ listed building. I made my approach to it slowly, conscious of wanting to take it all in. All around me people were going about their daily business, focusing on getting to or from the station, about to embark on the next stage of their respective journeys, their minds solely concerned with the here and the now. But to me, for now, the here and the now was irrelevant – for this was the location that on the early afternoon of April 6th 1988 saw the arrival of a German explorer bristling with artistic potential and transfixed with excitement at the prospect of the culmination of her greatest dream, her imminent arrival on the island of Ireland.

Walking into the ground floor level of the station, my mind consumed by visions I could only imagine, I tried to picture Inga taking these same steps, bearing the weight of her backpack on her tired teenage shoulders as she strode into the building on one of the last legs of her journey – and on the last day of her life. With no idea of what lay before her, and no concept of the horror that would follow.

Standing in the lower level, I tried to get my bearings. There was the ticket office…the ticket machines…the escalators. Everything seemed to be where it should be. But really, is it? Where is Inga? In a grave. Where is justice? Still tantalisingly just beyond reach. For all the developments elsewhere in the wider world in the intervening years, suddenly 2018 didn’t seem all that far removed from 1988. Standing here, in this station, it could’ve been 1988. The same orange colour scheme on the ground floor tiles for one thing. I closed my eyes and heard the same sounds – of movement, of people and trains, of whirring escalators, of scurrying footsteps. I felt the same feeling that I had at Larne ferry terminal and at Ballypatrick Forest Park. A feeling that try as I might I just can’t quite describe. A feeling that only music makes sense of in my mind.

thumbnail

Glasgow Central, ticket office. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

I made my way to the ticket office on the ground floor and joined the queue. I wasn’t planning on catching a train. But I wasn’t quite ready to move to the upper level of the station yet. I needed to be here, to feel here. To stand here and soak up the moment. It felt heavy. It always does. But that’s no reason to run from it, no reason to run from the past. The past informs the present. And the present is dependent on learning enough from the past in order to form a better future – or any future at all.

I walked towards the escalators on the other side of the ticket office. Unlike the ones on the far side, these ones would take me to the upper level. I placed my feet onto the escalator and thought of Inga standing in this very same spot. She had definitely stood here, as she entered the station the same way I had, walking in from the street having made her way from Queen Street station. The only way to get to the train she needed to catch was to go to the main concourse on the upper level, and to do that she would have had to take this very same escalator.

thumbnail (2)

Up the Down Escalator: Going towards the main concourse. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

After going up the escalator suddenly I was standing in the main concourse, a far bigger and far brighter section of the building than the level I had just come from, one with natural light rather than the artificial lights down below. I stood there for a moment and looked at the huge expanse before me. She was in my mind’s eye the whole time. 1988. 2018. A feeling of frustration. Taunted by the uselessness of hindsight. The impossibility of turning back the clock, of rewriting history. All we have is now. The future is unwritten. Which makes justice in this case all the more vital. For while we can’t rewrite the past, what we can do is close an open wound, right an ancient wrong, write a better present and form a brighter future in the process.

thumbnail (6)

 

thumbnail (3)

Standing Here: Glasgow Central, main concourse. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

I stood in the large main concourse and pictured Inga in this same place, her blue backpack, her sleeping bag on top with ‘USAF’ emblazoned on it and her green canvas bag, walking amongst the other passengers, who may have snatched a brief glimpse of this teenage explorer and some of whom may have spared her a thought at the time, perhaps wondering where she had come from and to where she might be headed, all the while never knowing the thousand miles that had passed beneath her feet in the seven days since she had had left her family’s flat in Haidhausen for her first trip abroad on her own. Like Inga, her fellow passengers couldn’t have known just how little time she had left on this Earth. By the time she entered Glasgow Central Station, she had only hours to live.

thumbnail (5)

Empty Spaces: Glasgow Central Station. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

I walked around the station’s main concourse and witnessed several trains on their respective platforms. Poised to depart any minute, adhering to an orderly schedule. The trains are all on time. But justice for one of their former passengers is running late. Thirty years late.

102. Nov 8th (2)

Preparing to leave Glasgow Central. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

It was at one of these very platforms from which Inga caught her train to Stranraer that afternoon on the 6th of April 1988. She was here, she walked right through here on her way not just to Stranraer, not just on to Larne, but to the strangest and cruellest fate, to the darkest and longest tunnel of torment. Perhaps it’s just because I’m so wrapped up in her case, but as I cast one last look around the main concourse of the station, I sensed a strong and lingering sadness, a silence without solace, pain where there should be peace. Inga’s trying to make her way to her next destination, but unlike that fresh Spring day in 1988, she isn’t trying to get to a train station or a ferry terminal. She isn’t looking to get to a hostel to put her head down for the night. Her spirit is surely seeking an end to the longest road of all. She was travelling and exploring then, and in a very different way she is still travelling, still searching, still seeking now. Except unlike in April 1988 she isn’t on her own anymore. I’m by her side. So is John Dallat MLA. So too are thousands of people across County Antrim, and many other people in the 106 countries around the world who I can tell from the analytics section read this blog. And this ‘long march’ will go on for however long it takes.

There is a light that never goes out.

 

Postscript: Glasgow Central 1988 (A film by Barry Coward)

This remarkable nine-minute clip was filmed in 1988 but remained unseen for 25 years until it was posted online in 2013. Belonging to a world that’s gone, it poignantly captures the ambience of Glasgow Central at roughly the same time Inga was there.

 

______________________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality

Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 20

‘Time Machine’ lyrics written by Bell/Colbert/Gardener/Queralt. Published by EMI Music Publishing ©1992

Glasgow Central 1988 © Barry Coward 2013

The Keeley Chronicles PART 19

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 19 Contents
Chapter 50: The Everlasting
Chapter 51: The Ghost of You
Chapter 52: Your Time Will Come
Acknowledgements for Part 19

 

Chapter 50: The Everlasting

Inga Oliver Forest

The Painter’s Link: Oliver McParland with his painting of Inga in front of her inscription stone at Ballypatrick Forest Park

 

The highest purpose of art is to inspire

Bob Dylan

 

One of the most fitting and bittersweet things about the movement that has grown up around the campaign for Inga is the increasing amount of artistic projects that are being inspired by her memory. Fitting because of course, Inga was an artist herself, very talented at drawing and making Papier-mâché figures as well as possessing a lovely singing voice and playing the guitar. And bittersweet because out of her murder, which exemplified the depraved depths certain individuals are capable of descending to, here we see a great contrast with the beauty and creativity that other human beings are capable of ascending to. Although at the time of writing Inga’s case remains officially unsolved, it is my information that the police have never been closer to bringing the case to a successful conclusion. In the meantime while we await further developments, Inga’s artistic inspiration is finding new frontiers.

One example of this is Ballycastle artist Oliver McParland who has painted a beautiful mural of Inga entitled The Girl With the Mockingbird based on the photo of her at the zoo first published in Part 12 of this blog last September and to which Oliver had the great idea to add the perfect poetic touch of a mocking bird resting on Inga’s outstretched hand. Regular readers of this blog may remember that in the same Part 12 it was revealed that Inga’s favourite song was ‘Mocking Bird’ by Barclay James Harvest. I later had the idea to use a line from this same song – namely, “Time will see your tears run dry, there’s a mocking bird singing songs in the trees” – for the inscription stone that rests in Ballypatrick Forest as I felt those lines echoed the circumstances of what had happened to Inga there and that as that song meant so much to her those lines would hopefully prove to be most fitting.

It was a masterstroke of Oliver’s to take those two separate elements – the mocking bird of the song, and the photo of Inga at the zoo – and fuse them to form the painting that is the main cover image of this instalment. As quoted at the beginning of this chapter, no less a cultural icon as Bob Dylan once said that the highest purpose of art is to inspire. Well, although Inga was denied the chance to create any more art herself as a result of her murder, remarkably, thirty years after her death she is inspiring new artworks to be born. It’s a bittersweet but beautiful legacy. And in doing so it shows the sheer force of Inga’s cause. I know the impact she’s had and continues to have on me, and likewise the impact she’s had on John Dallat as well as practically an entire community of North Antrim who have taken her to their hearts. In a case awash with so much sadness and human misery, the emergence of these artworks amounts to a rare shaft of light.

This is why I wanted to make it the subject of this instalment. I know that there are some people out there, although fortunately not many, who find the artistic aspects of this blog, the lyrical quotations, the music and poetic references somewhat pointless. But that I think is precisely missing the point. Inga’s case is unique, and so it’s only appropriate that this blog should chart a singular course. Obviously the investigative aspects of the case are vitally important, and I’ve covered them extensively in various parts of the blog. Other true crime blogs tend to focus solely on criminology, on facts and fractures, on gore and gruesomeness. But this is not a true crime blog – it’s the Inga-Maria Hauser blog. One of my central goals with it is to create and maintain a presence for her in the modern world that she was denied the opportunity to see or become a part of. And so the things that were most important to Inga – music, art, people and travel – will continue to loom large across the landscape of this blog. I see this as more than a mere blog, it’s the ongoing chronicle of a crucial crusade. A vast portal, a world within a world. As the philosopher Hegel once wrote, “The truth is in the whole”. And as a result, what John Dallat and I believe is Inga’s legacy as a cause and a muse can be granted yet more ground on which to grow.

After the dying of the light – the everlasting afterglow.

 

Chapter 51: The Ghost of You

_101680581_ingamariatrain

I Travel: One of the remarkable new photos of Inga that was made public for the first time in the recent BBC Spotlight documentary The Life and Death of Inga-Maria Hauser. Photo: Hauser family collection © 1988

 

Still I can’t escape the ghost of you

Duran Duran – ‘Ordinary World’

 

I was contacted earlier this year by a poet from Northern Ireland named Colin Sloan who in an interesting coincidence had lived in the student district of Inga’s home city of Munich in 1988, the year she was murdered in Northern Ireland, and having read this blog, got in touch with me. He has written a poem inspired by Inga that is published here for the first time. It’s a brilliant piece, incredibly moving and with such an authentic-sounding voice it’s as if the words are being intoned by Inga herself. On the one hand it’s Colin’s hypothesis (certainly one of the more plausible ones I’ve come across) of the events that transpired on the fateful night Inga arrived on these shores. And on the other hand it’s something else – a poet grappling with his craft to summon Inga’s voice to rise from the silence, and offer us, the readers, a vision of the possible events of that night from Inga’s perspective.

I think of the songs, books, movies and poems I love as being a doorway to another world – a means to venture beyond the often mundane routines and confines of daily life. The beauty of art is the scope it gives us to enter the ether of another space, where life can take on a different shape, or be shown for exactly what it is, in all its ugly reality and beauty. And to me Colin’s poem very much has that quality. Every time I read it I surrender my surroundings and enter another realm altogether. A mindscape. For the minutes that my mind wanders through his words, I’m there. In the darkness of that beautiful forest on that heartbreaking night.

 

Inga

By Colin Sloan © 2018

Splintering pines perforate this clearing
Sap resin hardens over tears under foliage
Along the lines of broken trees.

You ought to know the way blindfolded
As you have walked it often enough
Without a thought before you met me.

I am the unintended opportunity
Alone with my thoughts
In an unguarded moment
And you latched onto that
Hatching deceit as you befriended me
By the fruit machine in the bar on the ferry crossing over.

I misunderstood the lame excuse
To drive through these woods in that dialect you use
I struggled with my seat belt as the trees began to thicken
Whilst you punched me at will unremittingly
Steering one-handed over the ruts within the fire break lane.

I had come a long way to the place where you left me.
I had placed trust in you to see me right along the way.

I lay in that clearing for two weeks until they found me.
I will not rest in the memory until your dying day.

 

Chapter 52: Your Time Will Come

20180405_113708

A Change Is Gonna Come: Photo by Keeley Moss © 2018

 

No force on earth can stop an idea whose time has come

Victor Hugo

 

But that is not all. Others inspired by Inga’s memory to create new artworks include Clare McCotter, whose superb triptych of poems about Inga are featured in Part 15 of this blog (these poems Clare gave a reading of at Inga’s memorial ceremony in Ballypatrick Forest on the 30th anniversary earlier this year) and John Dallat MLA, whose touching poem No Beauty Hath Ever Been Seen was also featured in Part 15 and that I included on the back of the booklet given to all those who attended the memorial event.

In recent times, Clare was inspired to write a further poem about Inga. It is entitled Memorial Deer and in addition to it having been featured in the quarterly collection of poetry FourXFour Poetry NI I have obtained her permission to publish it here.

 

Memorial Deer

After visiting Inga-Maria Hauser’s memorial

By Clare McCotter © 2018

This evening
from the bracken margins
one seemed to clock me
standing beside the date
your tiny hand
first plucked
starfish from the air
that other
etched beneath
when you scratched
and clawed
and bled
but if turned to stone
like the fawn
when a shadow stoops
in long grasses
or the listener
with dark news
pointed at his chest
you might still be here
and loved less
asked to tell
why no bruises
were ever seen
why you didn’t scream
the cedars down
why you couldn’t read
scent messages on the wind.
 
That night
The deer fled
hill mist in their eyes
their hearts snow-drenched tulips.

 

Stunning. One line in particular brings me to tears – The date your tiny hand first plucked starfish from the air. Such poignancy. Visualising Inga as a baby. Because that is what she once was. Long before she became a face on a million printed pages. Long before she entered the annals of crime history. Long before she boarded that bastard boat. Long before she was driven to her death by that hulk of nothingness, that’s what she was – her tiny hands plucking starfish from the air as she opened her eyes for the first time in a Munich maternity hospital ward in May 1969.

And now here we are. Forty-nine years on from her birth. Thirty years on from her death. This is what’s left. This is all there is. But it’s more than all there was for a very long time. In the continued absence of justice, creativity can offer some solace. Inga believed in art and music, she believed in it enough to devote precious time to creating it. And I do too. To quote one of the first songs in the playlist that accompanies this blog, I believe in you.

And so, for the final example in this instalment of creativity inspired by Inga’s case – Inga’s cause – I’ve decided to follow Oliver’s painting and Colin and Clare’s poetry with a piece of my own. In this instance, the words of a song. All the way back in Part 4 of this blog, I made available a song I’d co-written and recorded called ‘422’ – 422 being the total number of passengers on the Galloway Princess the night it sailed from Stranraer to Larne with Inga on board. There is a further significance to the number 422 – this number included Inga, and one of those responsible for her murder. The song ‘422’ can only be heard in Part 4 of this blog, unlike ‘Plundered Past’ it isn’t on Spotify or YouTube, even though I think it’s one of the best songs I’ve been involved in writing. I thought it would be more special for it to only exist in one place. But because I don’t like separating my song words from where they ‘live’ – i.e. inside the song – I never printed the lyrics alongside the clip in Part 4. But seeing how this instalment is all about the creativity that Inga and her case have inspired, and we’ve so far had a painting and two poems, I thought that on account of how much of a big fan of music Inga was, it would be remiss not to include the words of a song she inspired.

So here are the words to the song ‘422’ for the first time. Unlike ‘Plundered Past’ which lyrically is a tapestry of facts, memories and excerpts from Inga’s diary that flash back and forward between her childhood and her trip through the UK in April 1988 that culminated in her arrival in Larne and the harrowing events that followed, ‘422’ is a more sombre and reflective piece that focuses on a number of different aspects. The verses are sung from the perspective of the RUC detectives who worked on the original 1988 investigation in the initial stages of the inquiry, and also allude to what happened to Inga. The chorus meanwhile speaks of my belief at the time when I wrote these words (in 2016) that despite the case appearing impossible to resolve, having gone unsolved for 28 years by that time, I felt that the truth would in time emerge. In the chorus I also sing of my belief that some or at least one of the people who are in a position to assist the investigation would do so. I would say that developments over the past ten months in this case have shown that to have been prescient.

Though still the wait for the final reckoning goes on – that day, I believe, will come.

 

422

By Keeley Moss © 2016

Four hundred and twenty-two people
Four hundred and twenty-two paths
Which of them to grill?
And which of them to ask?

Four hundred and twenty-two stories
Four hundred and twenty-two lives
The shadow of Inga-Maria grows behind your eyes

Truth will out
Time unzips lips and mouths
Truth will out
Time unzips lips and mouths

Four hundred and twenty-two bodies
Four hundred and twenty-two minds
Most with an innocent hobby
Some crave the fiendish kind

Four hundred and twenty-two reasons
Four hundred and twenty-two flags
She came in on the evening ferry
And left in a body bag

Truth will out
Time unzips lips and mouths
Truth will out
Time unzips lips and mouths

 

_____________________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 19

With thanks to Oliver McParland, Clare McCotter and Colin Sloan. There is a light that never goes out.

Cover painting by Oliver McParland © 2018 used with kind permission

Memorial Deer by Clare McCotter © 2018 used with kind permission

Inga by Colin Sloan © 2018 used with kind permission

‘422’ lyrics by Keeley Moss. Published by Copyright Control © 2016

‘Ordinary World’ written by Le Bon/J.Taylor/Bates/Cuccorullo. Published by Screen Gems-EMI Music Ltd. © 1993

The Keeley Chronicles PART 18

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

  187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 18 Contents
Chapter 45: There is a Light That Never Goes Out
Chapter 46: A Needle in the Haystack
Chapter 47: Eternal Flame
Chapter 48: Completing the Circle, Thirty Years On
Chapter 49: Wish You Were Here
Acknowledgements for Part 18

 

Chapter 45: There is a Light That Never Goes Out

PSNI's Raymond Murray 6.4.18

The last mile, the hardest mile: PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray in Cairnryan, Scotland on April 6th 2018

 

These storms always find her
To remind her

To the endless sky
The pink over grey
She looks for an answer
But it’s too late

Maybe it’s true
Some things were just never meant to be

Maybe not

This is a story
Fruit cut from the vine
Forgot and left to rot
Long before its time

This is a story
About the girl who lived next door
A wish made on a star
Brought her here tonight

The Pretenders – ‘The English Roses’

 

At the close of Part 17 I mentioned that it was my intention for this instalment to focus on the meeting John Dallat MLA and myself attended with PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray at police headquarters in Belfast in the week prior to the 30th anniversary of Inga-Maria’s murder. Even though I was confident I could exercise sufficient discretion in discussing aspects of what was a very positive and encouraging meeting without revealing anything too sensitive, I still felt a degree of reluctance about discussing it in public at all. One of the reasons I have twice postponed covering it in this blog – and why I’m only going to reveal limited details of it now – is due to the great respect I have for DCS Murray and his investigation, and my wish to not run the risk of disclosing anything that he might prefer to remain in-house, even though he was clear with me from the outset of the meeting that there would be questions he would be prepared to answer and ones he would not, which was indeed the case, and which I understood and accepted.

I would like to take this opportunity to place on record my appreciation for the time that DCS Murray was willing to grant John and I to discuss the case and for John to inform him of the plans for Inga-Maria’s memorial event. I would also like to acknowledge the courtesy I was personally extended. DCS Murray had in advance proposed that the meeting take place in Belfast rather than Maydown (in Co. Derry) to take into account that I would be commuting all the way from Dublin, a most thoughtful gesture which was much appreciated. Some things from the meeting that I will disclose here is that DCS Murray told me he has read “most” of this blog and that although when he’d been informed that someone had written a blog all about Inga-Maria and the case he had approached it with a fair degree of trepidation, he found the writing “tempered” and “measured”, that “your research is good”, and that this had led him to read most of the reminder of the blog (which to be fair, at this stage after seventeen parts, some of which are considerably longer than those of any blog, is no mean feat). I consider that a great honour for this blog, given DCS Murray’s position in relation to the case. I would suggest that no one in the world knows more about the case than him, for no one else has overseen it for longer and more importantly during a period in which the case has advanced the most since its inception. He also told me he thinks the blog has a significant and beneficial role to play as it “helps to generate empathy for Inga”. I was especially heartened to hear that. For that reason I know I made the right decision to go ahead and self-publish all eighteen parts so far and make it free to read, rather than the alternative of hoarding it in a drawer while sending it to publishers. That might have made commercial sense but would have been of less benefit to Inga-Maria.

DCS Murray is a very busy man, responsible for overseeing not only the investigation into Inga’s murder but is also the head of the PSNI’s Serious Crime Branch. Chief Constable George Hamilton, the most eminent figure in policing in the province recently stated in relation to Inga’s case, “DCS Raymond Murray has a strong record in solving historical cases – on the 30th anniversary of this brutal murder he’s back doing what he does best”. One such historical case was the 1981 murder of nine year-old Jennifer Cardy in Ballinderry, County Antrim, the victim of notorious serial child killer Robert Black, for which Black was given a fourth life sentence in 2011, having already been convicted and jailed for life in 1994 for the murders of three young girls in England and Scotland in the 1980’s. The extent of thoroughness which Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray and his team pursued the case against Black can be measured from the fact that circumstantial evidence attesting to Black’s guilt of Jennifer Cardy’s murder had been obtained by searching through petrol receipts – 560,000 in total – stored in his former employer’s archives to ascertain Black’s whereabouts on the dates surrounding Jennifer’s abduction and murder. Black’s trial for the murder began with the prosecutor, Toby Hedworth, stating that the discovery of Black’s signature upon these receipts was as good as signing his own confession. As an aside, can you imagine the unbelievable levels of patience and dedication necessary in sifting through 560,000 documents? And this was only one strand of what was a very wide-ranging and complex investigation. I would ask people to bear that in mind when they question the resolve and commitment, as they have done from time to time in the comments sections of the various parts of The Keeley Chronicles and elsewhere online, of DCS Murray and the PSNI to solve Inga-Maria’s murder. Although of equal importance, I think it’s fair to say that Jennifer Cardy’s murder didn’t have the degree of media focus and public attention that Inga-Maria’s case has been subjected to over the last year. In other words, if the PSNI were that determined to solve Jennifer’s murder, of which just one aspect involved them having to painstakingly sift through 560,000 documents, can you imagine them being any less committed to doing whatever is necessary to solve Inga-Maria’s case?

Jennifer Cardy 1981

Jennifer Cardy

Robert_Black_mugshot

Police mughot of Robert Black taken at Selkirk police station shortly after his arrest in Stow, Scotland in 1990

We ended up getting to spend exactly ninety minutes with DCS Murray which was a considerably longer time than John and I were anticipating, which given his very busy workload meant a great deal and I think it is indicative of the depth of commitment he has to Inga-Maria’s case. The detectives working the case have to be vigilant and mindful of the potential legal implications of any public disclosures, and especially in a case such as this that has in recent times grown to such an iconic level of importance and public interest in Northern Ireland, the stakes have never been higher. But more than anything, at the heart of the investigation, when you strip away all the layers of the legalities, all the witness statements, all the facts and figures and forensic science, there is a young girl who was deceived and destroyed, and ensuring the safest passage for justice to proceed and finally be achieved on her behalf is paramount. The detectives have a job to do, official protocol must be complied with, and I like everyone else desperate to see justice done must be patient in supporting the police to conduct their investigation as they see fit. I’ve looked into DCS Raymond Murray’s eyes and seen for myself the resolve and determination to do all he can to bring the case to a successful conclusion, and it is my own personal belief that it is only a matter of time before he succeeds. So with that said, I hope the readers of this blog will understand that I have to balance my wish to be informative with a need to tread carefully when necessary with what is still an open investigation, all the more so given the sensitivity of the present time.

58. Mar 26th AKA Keeley & John, Stormont (best, reduced to 30%)

Keeley Moss & John Dallat MLA at Parliament Buildings, Stormont Castle in Belfast after the meeting with PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray that left us feeling very encouraged about the prospects of justice for Inga-Maria

So instead I’ve decided to devote the bulk of this instalment to discussing another aspect entirely but one that illustrates how, just as Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray and the PSNI have never given up hope in trying to advance the investigation and bring the chief suspects to justice despite it being thirty years since Inga-Maria was murdered, with the various detectives on the team having spoken face-to-face with approximately 1,700 people in their efforts to match the DNA sample of the crime scene donor, there are other people out there who are willing to go wherever it takes and do whatever it takes to honour the cause of Inga-Maria Hauser, this artistic adventurer whose incredibly-brief presence on the island of Ireland and the horror that followed continues to resonate in ways she could never have imagined on the fateful night the Galloway Princess docked at Larne with her on board. In this instalment we will learn that although Inga’s parents have had to vacate the space they had long occupied in holding a torch for her due to death or ill-health, there are other figures emerging to ensure that, as I’ve quoted many times on social media at the foot of my statements about the campaign, “There is a light that never goes out”. And we will see just how inspirational Inga’s cause is, and how influential and powerful the human spirit can be, that a young woman could arrive on the island of Ireland in April 1988 alone, unknown and almost completely unnoticed and end up being murdered that night, and yet whose untold story all these years later would have such an impact that it would change the course of my life. Also in this instalment I will reveal for the very first time the inside account of how I came to be in contact with Inga’s family in the first place, which is a story in itself.

 

Chapter 46: A Needle in the Haystack

2016-12-20-PHOTO-00000175

Back to the Old House: Almut Hauser’s former apartment at 181 Einsteinstrasse, Haidhausen, Munich, just two doors up from Inga-Maria’s childhood home. Photo by Marcus Baumann ©2017

 

The last night on Maudlin Street
Goodbye house, goodbye stairs

The last night on Maudlin Street
Goodbye house forever
I never stole a happy hour around here

I am moving house
A half-life disappears today

Morrissey – ‘Late Night, Maudlin Street’ (1988)

 

Since 2009 when Inga-Maria’s mother Almut Hauser made a heartbreaking plea via a translator in the Belfast Telegraph to “Help bring an end to my 21-year nightmare”, nothing more had been heard publicly from any of Inga-Maria’s family members until recently. There had been intermittent media reports on the case on and off from 1988 up until early 2012 but then there were no more news reports or updates whatsoever for five years, until the spring of 2017 which was the 29th anniversary. Back when I began publishing this blog in 2016, at that time to all intents and purposes it seemed the case was dead – with their having been no updates or media articles for four and a half years by that point. My foremost intention when I started the blog was to try create something special for Inga-Maria, this person I had never met but whose story had touched my heart and left an indelible imprint on my psyche. It may sound naïve and hopelessly-idealistic but my thinking at that time was that if I could do something nice for Inga’s mum, then by proxy I could in a roundabout way do something nice for her, as a gesture from an Irish citizen to try make some very small amends for this horrible thing that Inga had suffered the night she arrived. Because there had been no new media reports for a full four years when I began researching what became this blog, and because no one I ever mentioned the case to in my native Dublin had heard of it, I assumed that that would be the case everywhere, and that nobody would be interested. That might seem hard to believe now given the eruption in interest there has been in the case over the last year or two. But it’s the truth. Back in early 2016, reading about what had happened to Inga had had such a profound effect on me that as I’ve said before that I simply could not get her or the case out of my mind, and as that feeling persisted and actually intensified week after week I resolved to try and do something, and spent the next four months researching and writing what would become Part 1 (I have since substantially enhanced and expanded the original text and photos).

When the blog captured the public’s imagination the way it did, going viral on the first day of publication much to my shock at the time, I felt so glad for one person in particular – Almut Hauser. I had read something she had said in the RUC press conference that she had addressed back in 1989 which was “I hope that the people of Northern Ireland do not forget Inga”. So when the blog took off in the way that it did, I was so looking forward to telling her that even after all these years, people had not forgotten Inga, and what’s more a large section of the community had felt inspired to come together to make a renewed and impassioned call for justice, that ‘people power’ was making its presence felt. So I wrote Almut a long letter, explaining who I was and why I had started the blog, and the response it had generated. I knew she didn’t speak English so I had my letter translated into German (Google Translate had turned out to be too unreliable so I asked one of my best friends who was originally from Dublin but had settled in Berlin if he would translate the letter and he kindly agreed). In the parcel I included a CD featuring four songs I’d written about Inga. I sent it off but was saddened not to receive a reply. After some weeks had passed, the parcel was returned with a message written (in German) on the front, on a sticker the post office in Munich had placed on it, which when translated read as “Unknown at this address”. This was a surprise to me, as I was fairly sure that I had the correct address for her in Haidhausen (a suburb of Munich).

So I continued trying to reach her, while working by day in the library where I was at the time and working on the blog by night. A woman from Larne who I’ve become friends with through this blog, her ex-husband’s friend just happened to be in Munich at that time and she very kindly asked her ex-husband to ask his friend to call to the address I had for Almut. When he did, he was told that there was no one named Almut Hauser there but that one of the previous occupants in the apartment block was an elderly woman who had since left the country. When this was communicated to me, I simply couldn’t believe that Inga’s mum would have left Munich and moved to another city much less another country as even though I didn’t know her, I knew she had always visited Inga’s grave and Inga’s dad Josef’s grave every day and I just knew how being able to do that would have been so important to her. Bear in mind that this was long before the news of Inga’s mum’s ill-health had been made public. And this is back when no one in Northern Ireland had heard of Viktor, or Friederike for that matter. The only living relative of Inga’s whose name was in the public domain (until 2018) was Almut. So at that time (2016) I had nothing else to go on. But I’m the sort of person who, if I feel passionate about something, I doggedly give it everything to the point that no odds no matter how seemingly insurmountable will dissuade me.

I assumed Almut must still be living in Munich, and I set out to try to find her so I could tell her about the blog and that the people of Northern Ireland hadn’t forgotten Inga, as she’d feared might turn out to be the case back in 1989. The first thing I did was go on Facebook. I typed in the name Almut Hauser and it turned up a mere two matches. Surely it wasn’t going to be this easy to find her? Surely was right – it wasn’t. Neither of them turned out to be her. So next I typed in the name Hauser into the Facebook search engine, but I limited it to only people residing in Munich. It turned up 253 matches. I assumed at least some of them would be relatives of hers, most likely grandchildren and a few cousins. Saying that, it was becoming akin to looking for, as the fabled saying goes, “A needle in the haystack”. I felt however that if I was to stand a chance of these people responding to my request, that I would have to write to them individually and not just sending out a generic ‘mass message’ that given the volume of emails and messages people receive on a daily basis, plus how many demands are on peoples time, there would be more chance of being ignored. So I decided to address them individually, all 253 of them. The process took weeks. I eventually received replies from the vast majority of them. Those who did reply sent a polite message back, some more detailed and more warm than others. The majority of them kindly wished me luck with my search. But by the end, by the time I had messaged the 253rd and final person on my list, not one of them turned out to be related to Almut or to even know of her. This really surprised me, and left me very disappointed. But still I was not deterred. “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better” as Samuel Beckett once wrote.

And so I tried again. I decided to dispense with social media altogether and went back to the fabled drawing board. I thought about my friend’s ex-husband’s friend calling to the address in Munich that I had for Almut and being told that there was no one living there with that name…but that one of the previous occupants in the apartment block was an elderly woman who had left the country. “Maybe she has left Germany after all?” I thought, perhaps because she could no longer bear to live with the memories of what had happened to her family, with her youngest daughter murdered and her husband now dead? I thought about it for a while and tried to put myself in her shoes. If I was her and if I was looking to leave Germany, for whatever reason, where would I go? I knew that she had been born in Austria and had grown up there, in a small town (the name of which I shan’t reveal here in order to reduce the chance of her being tracked down by any reporters, as she is not in a position to talk to anyone about Inga). I was conscious of how elderly people in general prefer familiar surroundings, how they find them more comforting. So I guessed that she had moved back to Austria, after many decades in Germany, and I guessed that of all the places in Austria it would be most likely that she would probably have moved back to her hometown. So I embarked on a search of the electoral register for the region of Austria where I knew Almut’s childhood home was located, and then eventually located the section of the register for that small town. And after a while of searching, there it was. I’d found her! It had to be her. What would be the odds of two separate people with the same obscure name having lived in the same small town? Well, probably pretty high given that quite a few decades had elapsed from when Almut originally lived there. Still, this was the best chance I had to reach her at last and communicate the news that the people of Northern Ireland hadn’t forgotten Inga as she’d feared back in 1989, and that in fact that her daughter’s case had become renewed with new energy, revived with new life, in a beautiful and poignant way that illustrates the indomitable nature of the human spirit and the refusal of this case to permanently fall silent until it is solved, until an ancient score is settled and Inga’s soul can be allowed to properly rest.

I ended up typing a completely new letter to her, in which I added a section explaining what had happened to the first letter and now I needed to find someone who could translate this new letter into German, as I felt I couldn’t ask the same friend who had translated my first letter due to my desire not to “melt his head”. After I sent out a request to all the staff in the RDS where I was working at the time, I was approached by a work colleague in another department who offered to translate my latest letter into German for me but who then proceeded to do nothing with it for months and no matter how gently I cajoled her or eventually how persistently I pleaded with her, nothing managed to rouse her from her inertia, instead she continually made every excuse under the sun (“The dog ate your letter” was about the only excuse she didn’t make for why she hadn’t translated the letter as promised). Eventually I ran out of patience and wrote a third, even longer letter, which the friend of mine who had befriended me through this blog very kindly arranged to have translated into German for me, something she managed to do within a mere two days. When it was sent to me I printed it out in work and sent this off in a parcel together with a new CD featuring four songs about Inga that I’d been inspired to write and record, to the new address I had for Almut in Austria, and waited.

Days passed. Then weeks. Then a month. But the only post that arrived was…The parcel I’d sent, returned – again. However, where the parcel I’d sent to the address in Munich had been returned because Almut had possibly left the country and no longer lived there, this parcel was returned bearing a most curious sticker. It read (in English) “Not collected”. Not collected? What the hell did that mean? I could see that the parcel was clearly unopened. So it hadn’t been refused. Just “Not collected”. I sat and tried to ponder what might have happened for the parcel to have been “Not collected”. I’d sent it to the address I had guessed she was living at in Austria, and unlike when I’d sent it to the address in Munich there was no word from the post office to say that the address was incorrect, or that the occupant wasn’t recognised at that address. If it was the case that whoever was living there was a different Almut Hauser then why hadn’t they opened what they would have expected was a parcel intended for them? And if it was the new home of Inga’s mum Almut that I was trying to reach how could she not have collected it if it was sent to her house? Surely she would only have to open the letterbox? So, now I guessed there must have been some reason that rendered her unable to open the letterbox. This was turning out to be a lot more complicated that I’d expected. But it struck me that ironically it was in keeping with the long and complicated route that the investigation had taken from day one. I then got the idea to send the parcel again but this time instead of addressing it directly to Almut I would address it “c/o Almut Hauser”, that way I figured that perhaps someone else other than her might feel more inclined to collect it and open it on her behalf and that hopefully they would communicate the contents of my letter to her. Still, I knew it was a long shot. It was becoming akin to sending out a message in a bottle.

But I sent it off again, for the third time, and again I waited. Initially I heard nothing back. However…a few weeks later an email landed in my inbox from a sender I didn’t recognise. From the tone of the opening words I just instinctively knew it was legitimate, and furthermore significant. I braced myself for whatever the email would contain. The author of the email identified themselves as Viktor Leibl, the grandson of Almut Hauser. He explained that the letter that I had sent had been passed on to him as his grandmother was unable to read it or reply to it. This – at last – would explain why I had received no reply to the previous letters I had sent her over the previous months. However when Viktor explained just why she was unable to read or reply to it, at that moment I burst into tears. I hadn’t cried for two years at this point, not since my own grandmother who I was extremely close to had died. But as I read Viktor’s first email further, it became apparent to me that one of the central aims I’d had in starting this blog and embarking upon the journey that had effectively taken over my life which was to try do something positive for Inga’s mum and therefore in a roundabout way as an Irish citizen to try make amends to Inga’s soul for the barbarism of those who murdered her, with whom I share the same nationality if nothing else, would not be possible. Ever. Because (as has since become public knowledge via the PSNI’s statements this year through the media) Almut had suffered a stroke not long before which had resulted in a heavy dementia, rendering her effectively no longer able to remember the past. This is something I learned twelve months (remarkably, twelve months to the day) before it entered the public domain but which I never went into detail about here in the blog or anywhere else online, not wanting to disclose any details unless or until the Hauser family themselves saw fit to do so.

The news that Almut, who had visited her daughter’s grave practically every day waiting for so many years to discover who had murdered her beloved daughter and what precisely had happened that night for Inga to have ended up many miles in the opposite direction to where she had intended to go, would now likely never be able to know or understand what had happened and who was responsible, I found incredibly-sad. It was a crushing realisation after everything else she’d had to suffer since 1988. In that moment I felt angry on her behalf, for that to be the outcome on top of all the other cruel injustices that had befallen her. But on the other hand it was some consolation to learn from Viktor that as a result of her condition no longer would Almut have to be conscious of the loss of her daughter in such horrific circumstances. It’s something I have since learned is commonplace among those who have had to bear the loss of a child in this way, where the development of Alzheimer’s or another such degenerative brain disease can be a way for the emotional system to guard against being overwhelmed by continuous grief.

 

Chapter 47: Eternal Flame

_101680579_ingamariaandfrederika

Two Sisters: Inga-Maria & Friederike Hauser pictured in the late 1970’s. Photo: Hauser family collection

 

Ein herz und eine seele

German proverb that translates as “One heart and one soul”, as quoted by Viktor Leibl in the 2018 BBC Spotlight documentary ‘The Life and Death of Inga-Maria Hauser’ to describe the relationship between Inga-Maria and Viktor’s mother Friederike

 

After that first email, Viktor and I began communicating regularly and soon began conversing on Skype. I liked him instantly from the moment we began chatting. He seemed a little shy which is always an endearing quality I find. One thing I remember vividly from our early contact was Viktor telling me that my email had been “a wake-up call” for him – he’d had absolutely no idea that there were people campaigning on behalf of the murdered aunt he’d never gotten to meet and that a large public movement had assembled and been mobilised. Viktor told me that he’d informed his mum, Inga’s sister Friederike, about this blog and the campaign that had by then been advocating for some time on Inga’s behalf, and that had brought her unsolved case back to public prominence after those four and a half years out of the spotlight between 2012 and 2016. Even so, I was not expecting to hear from Friederike. I was aware that she has never given an interview in all the years since Inga’s murder and I knew from Viktor how wary she is of people in general, which I understood given the terrible things that she’s had to face in her life. Viktor had told me that his mum never discussed Inga, which I perceived as being her way of dealing with the grief. Some people deal with grief differently, and I would never want to be judgemental of whatever way someone who had been through an enormous trauma had found was the best way for them personally to cope with it. Friederike’s way was to avoid discussing Inga, to avoid contact with most people, and to shun any requests for interviews for twenty-nine years at that time, and even though this blog is a true labour-of-love I did not expect her to deviate from this long-held policy and make an exception for me.

Therefore I was stunned when I received an email from Friederike out of the blue in May 2017. It was a very nice email and one that meant so much to me. She was much more forthcoming than I would have expected, and I so appreciated her trust and candour. Over the following weeks we exchanged several more emails. I greatly appreciated being able to learn more about her as a person, as well as Inga-Maria. I sent her a photo of me so she’d have more of an idea of who she was communicating with, and she sent me a photo of herself in return. When I saw her photo I was struck by how closely she resembled Viktor, almost a mirror image in fact. I am very respectful of her privacy, especially considering all she’s been through, and all the more so given her being so wary of press attention, so I have never revealed any of the contents of those emails to anyone, and on principle it’s not something I would ever do. I also resolved to never mention Friederike’s name, as I knew it had never (at that time) entered the public domain (subsequently in Spring 2018 the PSNI referred to her by name in a press statement for the first time, which is why I’m now doing so here. But if anyone combs back through previous parts of this blog they will see references only to “Inga-Maria’s sister” as I didn’t want to compromise her privacy or make it easier for the press to track her down by referring to her by name). In one of Friederike’s emails, she told me something that made me realise she’s had an even harder life than people would imagine, even people who are aware of Inga-Maria’s murder and the fact it has gone unsolved for thirty years now. And it made me even more protective of her privacy, which isn’t always easy given the extent of press interest there now is in Inga-Maria’s case and how at times over the past few years I’ve found myself being somewhat in the middle between someone who doesn’t want to speak and a ravenous media who sometimes struggle to comprehend the family member of a murder victim remaining silent. However, that is Friederike’s wish and everyone, myself included, has to respect that.

As I’ve said, I have never revealed anything from any of her emails to me, neither in this blog nor to anyone in private. However, I hope Friederike will allow me one brief and minor exception. On May 28th 2017, poignantly on what would have been Inga-Maria’s 48th birthday, she replied to my previous mail and in addition to a number of other things expressed her sadness about that anniversary. I had revealed to her in a previous mail about the song ‘Plundered Past’, the lyrics of which I had written about Inga-Maria, and which at that time was about to be released as the second single by my band Session Motts. We’d assembled a film crew and had spent the previous week in Larne Harbour and other locations working on the video for it, a video which depicts Inga-Maria prior to and during her journey to Larne (see Part 10 of this blog for the full story of the making of that video, and to see the video itself). The opening of that email read as follows:

 

Dear Keeley,

Today it is a very sad day, it’s my sister’s birthday today, thank you for writing your mail to me.

Hope everything will be great for your band’s new video.

I am sure, Inga will like it.

 

I am sure, Inga will like it. I couldn’t speak. Those few simple words blew my mind. For here was someone who actually knew Inga, and more than that, is the closest living link to this person who “crept in the back door of my mind” and stayed to quote one of the lines in ‘Plundered Past’. Whose cause continues to flicker undimmed and undiminished like an eternal flame. An internal flame. And now that the flame has caught ablaze in the public domain no amount of dousing is going to stop that flame spreading.

Of course I have no way of knowing what Inga would have thought of the video, or the songs, or this blog for that matter. But having Inga’s family and friends respond favourably is the closest I’m going to get to know what she herself might have thought of it. And hearing from a number of them as I have that they think she would have liked it is enough for me to feel it has all been worthwhile, however long we have to wait for the case to be solved. I still believe it’s a matter of ‘when’ the case is solved rather than ‘if’, even if at the present time I seem to be in a minority where such optimism is involved. But as I’ve told many of the people who have contacted me since the most recent arrests in the case were made, I don’t share the current pessimistic mood that I’m aware is doing the rounds in response to the lack of further news and the fact no charges have yet been brought. I believe Inga’s case is going to be solved, and that those involved in her murder will see the inside of a courtroom. As the saying goes, it’s a marathon not a sprint.

Only time will tell if my faith is well-placed.

 

Chapter 48: Completing the Circle, Thirty Years On

153. June 7th (Reversed and reduced to 20%)

In the City: Viktor Leibl & Keeley Moss on the Ormeau Road in Belfast. Photo by Keeley Moss ©2018

 

Going on to Ireland next. I think I’m looking forward to that the best.

Inga-Maria Hauser, diary entry, Scotland, April 6th 1988

 

Viktor and I remained in contact and have become good friends since he first emailed me in early 2017. I can now reveal it was he who provided me with the recording of Inga singing and playing ‘Greensleeves’ when I explained to him my idea to publish it in this blog in the hope that the more people I might be able to get to hear it the more chance I felt there was of one particular person who is in a position to help bring the investigation forward hearing Inga’s voice, and that this idea, as unorthodox as it was, might succeed where other efforts behind the scenes had thus far failed in reaching out to that person’s conscience for Inga’s sake as I could not stop thinking that her soul must be crying out for justice. In early 2018 as the significant landmark of Inga-Maria’s 30th anniversary approached, I got in touch with Viktor to inform him of John Dallat’s idea to install an inscription stone at Ballypatrick Forest that would be the first memorial for Inga in Northern Ireland, that would mark the area where her life had been so cruelly taken, and furthermore would give the local community a focal point to reflect and pay their respects to the teenage traveller who had only wanted to visit their country when she was effectively executed practically upon her arrival on these shores. John and I wanted to invite Viktor to the event that was being planned to celebrate Inga as a person and to unveil the inscription stone. Viktor informed me that he would be unfortunately unable to attend due to work commitments, although he had requested time off to do so. I kept him informed of how the day had unfolded and emailed him and Friederike (and friends of Inga’s in Munich) a number of links and articles about the event, so that even though they were not there in person, they would be able to feel a part of it. One of Inga’s schoolmates later informed me that she actually watched the memorial event from Munich on an online news feed broadcast live from Ballypatrick Forest.

While Viktor had been unable to attend the memorial event, he messaged me in April with the news that he would be coming to Northern Ireland after all, in the summer, on an internship programme in connection with his work. He had originally requested being sent to Dublin but all of the places on the internship there were taken so he asked for his second choice, which was Belfast. I wondered if his decision was motivated by the fact that when Inga arrived in Northern Ireland she had been intending to travel to Belfast and then on to Dublin. It felt very emotional reading this message from him, the symbolic significance of it was immediately apparent to me. For it meant that thirty years on from the fateful night she had arrived in Northern Ireland, now Viktor would be “following in her footsteps” as the saying goes.

Before long it was June and Viktor was on the verge of arriving in Belfast as planned. Like Inga herself I tend to have a very open, freewheeling attitude to life in general with a perhaps foolhardy faith in ‘the Universe’ where I generally trust that everything will fall into place, and so far for me it has. I’m of course well aware that that approach did not serve Inga well in the end but instinctively I’ve learned to trust it and it works for me. I used to be overly cautious, and it severely limited my life, and led me to harbour regrets that I wouldn’t have had otherwise. So I tend not to worry about anything. But where the prospect of Viktor arriving in Northern Ireland was concerned, I was worried. I’ve heard a lot about how statistically Northern Ireland is among the safest countries for tourists anywhere in the world, and I feel my native Dublin is nowadays more safe than ever, but Viktor is no ordinary tourist – he’s the nephew of arguably the most notorious unsolved murder victim in Northern Ireland, someone who was as I have said on more than one occasion in this blog the only tourist in history to be the victim of a sexually-motivated murder in the province. Lightning couldn’t strike twice…Could it? The idea was so unlikely as to be unbelievable but then again, as Almut Hauser had said about Inga’s murder, “It was, and still is, unbelievable” – that a young woman could arrive in a country where no tourist had ever been murdered in such a way, and for it to happen to her and (to this day) only her, and what’s more for it to have happened before she’d even set foot on dry land? That was statistically so unlikely, and actually unprecedented – and yet it happened.

So I felt an urge to wrap Viktor in cotton wool as the saying goes, just in case something, anything, might go wrong. Fortunately he touched down safely in Belfast and made his way to his lodgings on the Ormeau Road where he and I met a few days later for lunch with the BBC Spotlight team who I’d put Viktor in contact with a few weeks previously during the production of the landmark documentary The Life and Death of Inga-Maria Hauser. It was a beautiful sunny day as I made my way from Dublin by coach to Belfast to meet with him in person for the first time. I travel everywhere by public transport, and like Inga-Maria my favourite mode of transport has always been the train. Perhaps because so much of the last week of her life was spent on trains, and that’s the period of time that has been most prevalent in my mind ever since I took such an interest in her case in the first place, I find I can’t stop thinking of her whenever I’m in a train station or a bus station, or an airport or ferry terminal, or on board any of those modes of transport. And here now, as I travelled to meet the first relative of hers to set foot in Northern Ireland since 1989, that was even more the case. I gazed out the coach window at the miles of wide open spaces that stretched out before me like a yawning mouth, the beautiful sunny day taunting with its glory as just another to add to the list of things that Inga was being denied the opportunity to witness or experience. Three hours after departing Dublin, the coach approached the outskirts of Belfast, that familiar kingdom of red-bricks and relics, a fascinating city with as many scars as homegrown stars, the historical and the hysterical combining to imposing effect.

I disembarked at Glengall Street and soon after hopped in a cab bound for the Ormeau Road. Within a few minutes I was there, and there he was before me, the closest living link to Inga I was ever likely to meet. His mere arrival in Belfast was a notable achievement – it’s something Inga tried but was prevented from doing. His presence in Northern Ireland saw the completion of a circle thirty years on. I felt it was akin to the passing of a torch – from one ‘Universal Traveller’ to another, from Inga-Maria to Viktor, the nephew she never lived long enough to see enter the world. Instantly the warm camaraderie we’d formed over many emails and Skype chats was solidified in person. He said something to me like “Finally you’re no longer just a blur of pixels!” and I laughed (he’s told me how notoriously-bad the quality of Wi-Fi can be in Germany which amazed me as I expected the exact opposite to be the case given the perception here of Germany being at the apex of cutting-edge technology but Viktor assures me that view is very far from the truth). We immediately fell into easy conversation and had a lovely lunch with the Spotlight production team (Conor Spackman, Pippa Cooke and Carla Speer), all of whom I became very fond of while working with them on the programme about Inga-Maria. We took some photos and chatted amongst ourselves until the Spotlight team had to go back to the office after which Viktor and I stayed on at the restaurant. I asked him how his grandmother was; knowing that her condition is not something that can improve but still wishing that somehow it might be otherwise. And I asked him how his mum is, and how his internship was going, and how he’s finding Belfast. Simple things really but significant things in a way. And as we spoke, the sun shone down on this beautiful day and I felt so melancholy that Inga couldn’t be here. For here I was I was in Belfast because of Inga. Viktor was in Belfast because of his internship (but although I didn’t ask him directly, I felt Inga must have had something to do with his initial choice of Dublin and then Belfast of all the places he could have done his internship, I mean why come all the way from Austria to those specific places otherwise?) But Inga – the reason I was there, and surely a reason for Viktor being there – wasn’t here. She’s nowhere.

And yet, in a sense, she’s everywhere. She may be dead but her inspiration is more alive than ever. There are several poets who have this year felt inspired to write poetry about her, there is a wonderful artist in Ballycastle named Oliver who was inspired to paint her portrait (which I intend to feature in the next instalment of The Keeley Chronicles) and in addition to this blog almost every song I’ve written for more than two years has been inspired by her. She was such a creative person, and although she died in a way that was an affront to creativity, she has inspired and is continuing to inspire creativity which I think will be her lasting legacy. And that can defy the lifelong silence her killer imposed on her. Because the individuals responsible for her murder can’t murder songs, or poems, or paintings. They can’t murder creativity, or passion, or inspiration. And all those things can live on long after those individuals have gone. Sometimes the quietest sounds are the loudest. There are some loud personalities in life who ultimately leave no lasting trace, perhaps for instance the sort of man who walks into a pub with scratches on his face.

And then there those who don’t live very long at all but who ultimately go on to make more impact than those who have lived more than three times the length of time they got to. Anne Frank is a perfect example of this. She died at the age of 15 and was completely unknown during her short lifetime. But after her death at the hands of the Nazis at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in 1945 the diary she’d secretly written her thoughts in while hiding with her family in a basement from the occupying Nazi forces was discovered and following it’s publication would go on to win a large audience around the world, since becoming a hugely-celebrated classic, and granting Anne Frank posthumous fame. The Nazi soldiers who captured her and imprisoned her? Who were they? What are their names? No one knows. No one cares. But Anne Frank – who died unknown and unmourned at the hands of her captors’ cohorts – would achieve more in death than they ever would in life, or in death for that matter. Do you see what I’m getting at? This is I think one of the most important points of this entire saga I’ve spent the past few years immersed in, an odyssey that’s admittedly been as curious to me as any of the by-now countless number of people who during that time have asked me why I’ve felt so drawn to this one case above all – and this one person at the heart of it all. For Anne Frank in 1945, read Inga-Maria Hauser in 1988. Sure, the circumstances of their deaths were different. But the parallels are undeniable. Both were teenage girls who met with an horrific demise. Both left creative treasures that were fortunately preserved and which emerged into the world years later (Inga-Maria had to wait a lot longer than Anne Frank for her artistic flair to receive public recognition). But both are now remembered and celebrated, by so many more people than were ever aware of them during their respective short lifetimes. And are in turn inspiring new artworks to be born. It’s a bittersweet but beautiful legacy to have left behind, something both Anne Frank and Inga-Maria would surely be very proud of. Which is a lot more than can be said for the very different sort of legacy those who condemned them to their deaths will leave behind.

 

Chapter 49: Wish You Were Here

Viktor Leibl & Keeley Moss, Dublin, June 2018

Come a Long Way: Viktor Leibl & Keeley Moss in Dalkey, Dublin. Photo by Keeley Moss ©2018

 

How I wish, how I wish you were here
We’re just two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year

Pink Floyd – ‘Wish You Were Here’

 

In Part 2 of this blog there is a chapter titled I Started Something I Couldn’t Finish. Sharing a title with The Smiths’ 1987 single of the same name that was released five months to the day before Inga-Maria was murdered, I felt it described perfectly the journey she started but indeed, couldn’t finish. I have said many times that it’s one of the things that has bothered me most ever since I first read about the case, that sense of ‘unfinished business’, of a crusade that was never completed, a journey that had to be jettisoned. Inga-Maria’s trip through the UK and Ireland in the spring of 1988 was (or would have been) the realisation of a dream (her mum Almut was quoted in 2009 as saying, literally, “It was her dream”). In the period following the murder Inga-Maria’s parents visited Northern Ireland (on the first visit in 1988, Josef Hauser travelled to the province alone in order to identify her body, and the second, in 1989, in the run-up to the first-year anniversary both he and Almut visited Ballypatrick Forest Park and later made the televised appeal for information through a translator in an RUC station that I referred to earlier in this instalment). So the fact that Inga-Maria never got to realise that dream that it could be said has hung suspended in the air for thirty years unresolved, is much like her unsolved case itself a continuous bugbear, and an undoubted source of angst and frustration for the good people of County Antrim and for people such as John Dallat and myself.

So when Viktor messaged me to say he was coming to Dublin, this struck me as having such a poignant but beautiful symmetry to it. As a result, thirty years after Inga-Maria should have reached Dublin, Viktor would became the first-ever member of the Hauser family to reach the Irish capitol, and what’s more, he would travel from Belfast to do so. This journey is precisely the one Inga-Maria would have undertaken on April 7th 1988 had she not been murdered the night before. The significance of that did not escape me. I wondered how much Viktor would be conscious of that as he made that journey.

After meeting him in Belfast, Viktor had contacted me a couple of weeks in advance to see which date best suited to meet up. I work weekends and he works weekdays but on the weekend of June 23rd-24th I was set to work the Saturday and the Monday, having Sunday free, which I felt was an ideal opportunity to host Viktor and take him on a tour of Dublin. So we arranged to meet on the Sunday. Therefore it was a surprise, but a very pleasant one, to receive a message from him while I was in work on the Saturday to say that he was already in Dublin with a work colleague, having travelled down a day early, and what’s more he messaged to say they didn’t have anywhere to stay. His exact words were, “Keeley, do you have a hint about a place to stay for my colleague Simon and me? We actually didn’t think about this”. At first I smiled when I read that last sentence, as I felt it was something that only a young person (Viktor is in his mid-twenties) would do, to travel to an unfamiliar city or town without having planned in advance where they would stay (it’s something I myself still do).

Then however it occurred to me that that is exactly what Inga-Maria had done on the last day of her life, having written her fateful last words “Wonder where I stay tonight? Need more money” in her diary before boarding the ferry in Stranraer that evening, a journey that would irrevocably change the course of her life, with fatal consequences. But where Inga had been in the words of one of the many people who have left a comment on one of the parts of this blog, “incredibly unlucky”, I have always been fortunate to have avoided peril on any of the many times I have travelled to a unfamiliar location without having arranged anywhere to stay in advance, and here Viktor would also be fortunate. Viktor told me that the first thing anyone said to him when he announced that he was planning on coming to (Northern) Ireland was, “Don’t get yourself killed”. Even though I tell people on a regular basis just how safe I believe Ireland nowadays is, due to the circumstances of what had happened to Inga within minutes of her arrival at Larne and the fact that Viktor is her blood relative as I said earlier I felt more conscious of his safety, and more protective of him, than would otherwise have been the case. So when he messaged to say that he was in Dublin and was suddenly planning to stay in the city overnight but had nowhere to stay, I phoned around B&B’s close to where I lived to see if I could book him and his colleague somewhere to stay. Had it just been Viktor on his own I would’ve offered for him to stay with me but my flat is very small and has just the one single bed. However, every B&B I phoned had no rooms available at such short notice, and when I broadened my search to hotels I was shocked to find that the only hotel rooms still available in the city that night would cost upwards of €230 for each person. I informed Viktor of this and assured him that I would sort something out, and that he could stay with me and I would have a think about where his colleague could stay. He soon replied to say that his colleague would be happy to sleep on my floor. So with that, it was sorted. I was still in work at this stage and wouldn’t be home until 8.30pm so wouldn’t have time to try and source extra bedclothes but I figured I could try and cobble together whatever else might be needed on the hoof.

On my train journey home from work I listened to the playlist of songs I’d made for Inga-Maria, and thought about all of the events that had led to this point, of her arrival on this island on a spring night all those years ago and all of the many twists and turns that had ensued since. And now here we were, thirty years on, with the police closer than ever to bringing some or all of those involved in her murder to justice, and here was a blood relative of hers finally in the city, my city, that she had come so tantalisingly close to reaching back in 1988. Where Inga-Maria hadn’t made it that far, Viktor had. Where she had sought sanctuary but found only savagery, Viktor had sought a safe harbour and found Bulloch Harbour, the serene marina around the corner from my flat.

As I made my way home, I wondered how it would feel to see him in Dublin. I couldn’t shake from my mind the significance of him finally reaching here, and completing a circle that Inga-Maria had commenced but can never complete. As I made my way on to my street that night, one of the songs on the special playlist to the right of this piece, ‘Tell Yer Loved Ones’ by the brilliant Dublin band Tandem Felix suddenly came on the random shuffle on my phone. This immensely-poignant song always makes me think of Inga (even though it’s not about her). And here it was playing, and there he was in front of me. Standing there, already a fixture in my future memories of the past. I was aware of how much this moment meant. Within seconds we had greeted one another and had fallen into easy conversation as I showed him and his colleague the way towards the door of my home. Once inside I urged them to make themselves at home while I set about fixing some food. We chatted late into the night and before going to sleep, I decided to play them some of the new songs I’ve felt inspired to write about his murdered aunt. I hope Viktor doesn’t mind me saying this but while he’s a lovely person who I’m very fond of I think it’s fair to say he’s not a particularly emotional guy. So it surprised me the way he reacted to all three of the songs I played him (I never perform solo acoustic anymore, far preferring to play as part of a band but made an exception for Inga’s memorial event and likewise for when I played for Viktor). In particular after one of the songs, one which I wrote from Inga’s mum Almut’s perspective, I saw that he had tears in his eyes. His subsequent praise for these songs, as I told him at the time, meant more to me than any reaction in the world. Because of the incredibly-slow way the music industry operates, it’s possible that no one outside of my flat that night will hear these songs for years, and I wasn’t sure when Viktor would be in Ireland again or if I’d ever get another chance to play these songs for a member of Inga’s family, so I’m glad that I had the opportunity to do so. If I never play another song again, to have played those three songs for him honestly meant more to me than if I got to play them in front of a million people. I’m aware there are people out there who don’t understand passion (and more specifically there are certain people out there who unfortunately don’t understand my passion and can’t comprehend the sincerity of my motives where all my work on Inga’s case is concerned) so that may seem hard to believe, but I don’t care, I know it’s true, and I know Viktor does as well, which is all that matters.

The following morning, after a pleasant night’s sleep, I made breakfast and the boys chatted among themselves (and had a frankly hilarious argument with each other). Then we took some photos and went out, into an even more beautiful summer’s day than had been the case in Belfast. I thought I’d take them up to Dalkey and on from there to Sorrento Park, at the summit of which is arguably the best view in all of Ireland, a view said to rival that of the Bay of Naples, which is exactly the sort of sight I think Inga would have been most captivated by had she made it that far. After that we stopped for some soft drinks in Dalkey village and made our way into the city by train. By train – Inga-Maria’s favourite way to travel. The DART was packed with people on their way to various beaches, it being a hot Sunday in summertime. None of the people on the train had any idea who Viktor was nor the significance of his visit. That in a way would not be surprising given that Inga’s case is nowhere near as big a deal in the Republic of Ireland as it is in the North. I sat there on the train opposite Viktor, and it crossed my mind that Inga would have loved this moment had she been able to be here. A beautiful day, summertime in full flight, a free day ahead of us, on a train her favourite mode of transport, en route to show her nephew Viktor around the city. She would love that. She should be here. I wish she was.

We arrived at Pearse Station (I had taken Viktor and Simon to Pearse in order to let Viktor play the piano as I had learned he can play the piano and there’s one at that station for anyone to play. But he was quite shy when we got there so all three of us had only a very brief bash on it). I knew Viktor has a keen interest in science so next I took him to the science exhibition in Trinity College. After spending some time there, I brought them to what I think is one of the best places to hang out on a hot day in Dublin, namely the cricket pavilion on the grounds of Trinity College known to some as “The Pav” where we had ice creams and soaked up the sun for a little while before we had to make a mad dash so Viktor and Simon could catch their scheduled Enterprise train back to Belfast. We had to run something like a couple of miles to make the train which we made with literally one minute to spare – our amusement and relief is evident in the photo I took as they boarded the train (see directly below).

IMG_20180624_201958_834

Race for the Prize: We made the Enterprise train to Belfast with literally one minute to spare… Photo: Keeley Moss ©2018

 

After we’d waved our last goodbyes, I turned around and headed for home. Feeling a little lighter, feeling fortunate I’d gotten to experience something so meaningful. I’d been given the chance to ensure that Viktor, my friend and Inga-Maria’s blood relative, had food, shelter and a safe passage while visiting the city that thirty years before had been Inga-Maria’s intended destination from Belfast. And as small a contribution as I’d made in that respect, it did feel a little like this was coming full circle, a chance to if not rewrite history then at least to ensure that history did not repeat itself. And that means a lot. Because as easy as it was for me to do, it was something that would have made all the difference in the world to Inga-Maria had those who murdered her instead been willing to see to it that she was granted the customary warm Irish welcome and safe passage that was the least she deserved on the night she arrived with a head full of dreams at the Larne ferry terminal on the 6th of April 1988.

But as I said, instead of being shown sanctuary she was shown only savagery. And so that shall remain the case for as long as justice is delayed. And justice delayed is justice denied. It’s high time we see the arrival of that tide, like the waves that carried a certain ferry forth on a long-ago Northern night…

____________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser  cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 18

Thanks again to Inga Richardson and Marcus Baumann for their valued assistance.

‘The English Roses’ written by Chrissie Hynde
Published by Hynde House of Hits/ATV Music Publishing ©1981

‘Late Night, Maudlin Street’ written by Morrissey/Street
Published by Warner Bros. Music Ltd/Linder Ltd/Copyright Control ©1988

‘Wish You Were Here’ written by Waters/Gilmour
Published by Pink Floyd Music Publishers Inc. ©1975

The Keeley Chronicles PART 17

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 17 Contents 
Chapter 43: Made of Stone
Chapter 44: Ceremony
Acknowledgements for Part 17

 

Chapter 43: Made of Stone

IMG-20180406-WA0004

Last Flowers: Anne Dallat lays one of thirty black-ribboned roses – to symbolise each one of the thirty years of life that Inga-Maria had stolen from her – while the author looks on with John Dallat MLA and Councillor Donal Cunningham standing directly behind. Photo by Justin Kernaghan ©2018

 

Your knuckles whiten on the wheel
The last thing that your hands will feel
Your final flight can’t be delayed

The Stone Roses – ‘Made of Stone’

 

Before publishing the next instalment of this blog, in which I hope to discretely discuss aspects of my and John Dallat MLA’s face-to-face meeting with PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray at police headquarters in Belfast, I would like to devote an instalment to the memorial event held for Inga-Maria in Ballypatrick Forest Park on April 6th which coincided with the 30th anniversary of her murder.

With each new blog instalment every month I try to focus on a different aspect of the case or of Inga-Maria’s life, in the hope of keeping things fresh but also to hopefully ensure that this blog has as much depth and variety as possible moving forward, both in terms of paying tribute to the beautiful young life stolen at the centre of it all and also to expand the horizons of what for many years had been portrayed in the media in a rather more reductive and one-dimensional way. I have come to learn that there are many dimensions to this case, some of which are a lot more public than others – and some of which are not public at all. Even with the sixteen parts of this blog to date having amounted to some 50,000 words, there is so much more still to be said, and no doubt even more still to learn. I plan to delve into some of these issues in the future instalments of the blog but before doing so, I’d like to take this opportunity to reflect on the memorial event staged at Ballypatrick Forest, specifically for the benefit of those who were not able to be there in person and to acknowledge those who were and who made in some cases very long journeys to attend, and to also reveal a lot of the background to the event that is not known.

Another reason for my feeling that I should dedicate an instalment to the memorial event and the inscription stone at the centre of it before moving on to other areas is that it is my intention that this blog, by the time it is complete, will hopefully contain everything that is relevant to Inga-Maria and the case. And considering that last month’s memorial was the first public event of its kind arranged for Inga-Maria, I think it would be remiss of me not to include it in the blog, even though it has been covered extensively elsewhere. However most of those newspaper accounts, while obviously very welcome in terms of generating additional coverage for what is still an unsolved case at the time of writing, were by their nature fairly straightforward reports whereas as an actual contributor to the event, and someone who had been involved since its inception I was able to have a certain perspective on it that is perhaps unique so I hope I will be able to convey that here.

Soon after publishing Inga-Maria’s performance of ‘Greensleeves’ via this blog last November which was the first time the Northern Ireland public had gotten to hear her voice,  I travelled to John Dallat’s home in Kilrea near Coleraine where John had taken me into his confidence for an initial brainstorming session about his ideas for what became the memorial event in Ballypatrick Forest Park. That weekend in November John held a meeting with myself and Councillor Donal Cunningham at the Marine Hotel in Ballycastle during which John’s initial plans were discussed. John’s original idea was for a three-day event to take place over the weekend of Inga-Maria’s 30th anniversary from April 6th to April 8th and that was to have involved a night of music at the Marine Hotel on the Friday, followed by a ceremony at the Corrymeela Ballycastle centre on the Saturday and rounded off by a sponsored walk to Ballypatrick Forest on the Sunday with all of the proceeds going to support a charity that raise funds to assist those who have been victims of sexual violence. On the day of our meeting last November, both the Marine Hotel and the Corrymeela Ballycastle Centre were provisionally booked for this purpose. However, soon after this my band, who John had asked to perform a set of music at the event in honour of Inga, unfortunately broke up. Furthermore over the following months it became apparent that the plans for a three-day event, while ambitious and impressive in scope, might prove too elaborate an undertaking that would run the risk of the intended purpose of the original idea becoming unfocused, and that Inga-Maria’s memory would in fact be better served by streamlining the memorial plans to a one-day event, with a suitably-sombre ceremony centred around the unveiling of an inscription stone in her honour, the first of its kind, to mark the area where her life was so cruelly taken on the night of her arrival in Northern Ireland all those years ago.

So many people had messaged me over the past two years to say that it was a shame that there was nothing in the area to commemorate Inga-Maria’s tragic passing. This had weighed on my mind for some time, and I know it was the same for John for even longer. We also felt the absence of an inscription stone meant that aside from a photo of Inga that a local person had thoughtfully placed by a tree along the nature ramble in Ballypatrick Forest (see photo directly below) there was nothing to act as a focal point for people to pay their respects, all the more so considering that Inga-Maria is buried not in Northern Ireland but in her native city of Munich which is not easily accessible for the many people in Northern Ireland and in particular the communities of the rural Glens and Causeway Coast area who have touchingly taken Inga-Maria to their hearts.

Inga makeshift memorial (cropped)

Pictures of You: The poignant makeshift memorial at Ballypatrick Forest Park which prior to the creation of the inscription stone was the only marker for Inga-Maria anywhere. Photo by Keeley Moss ©2018

 

The weeks preceding the memorial were very hectic, with so much to prepare and the event needing to be promoted. John marshalled everything superbly and delegated extremely well, assigning various roles to people who he instinctively felt were right for each task. John himself crucially secured funding for the creation of the inscription stone and he co-ordinated with Councillor Donal Cunningham to make the necessary arrangements for the event. John nominated me to write the wording for the inscription. It meant the world to me to be asked to do that, especially as having communicated at length over the past few years with friends and family members of Inga-Maria, and with the desire I have felt from the outset in wanting this blog to focus on the person Inga-Maria was and on the events of her life as much as possible (and not just the grisly details of her death, or the many mysterious aspects of the case itself) I felt I was in a good position to choose a wording that would represent the person she was, and that I hoped she herself would have approved of.

John also asked me to create a four-page booklet to be distributed at the event and to perform music during the ceremony. For the memorial booklet I chose my favourite photo of Inga-Maria for the front, one that I felt captures her smiling youthful zest so poignantly, one in which her appetite for life and her hopes for the future are I think visible on her face, a future that would mutate into a nightmare on the night that very face was damaged beyond repair. Inside the booklet was an introductory message penned by John on the second page, with Clare McCotter’s triptych of poems for Inga-Maria taking up the third page (these poems can be read in Part 15 of this blog). The back page featured a poem John had written for Inga entitled No Beauty Hath Ever Been Seen (this can also be viewed in Part 15, a poem John was too modest to take credit for upon its inclusion in the memorial booklet) and lastly the back page also included the lyrics to a new song I’ve written from Inga’s mother Almut Hauser’s perspective. Finally, at the bottom of the back page the most well-known iconic photo of Inga was added and with that, once the correct margins, spacings and fonts were added, the memorial booklet was complete.

John enlisted Clare McCotter to read her poems for Inga during the ceremony and Donal Cunningham was asked by John to perform the role of MC. As a lovely additional touch, John bought thirty red roses and his wife Anne took care to tie a black ribbon around each and every one of the roses, to symbolise the fact that it had now been thirty years since Inga-Maria’s life was so brutally taken.

While John co-ordinated the preparations for the memorial and Donal liaised with the creator of the inscription stone (a local man named Donal Og Newcombe) I set up an event page on Facebook to which I invited several hundred people and generally handled the social media promotion of the event to get the word out. No sooner had word began to circulate about the event that we were contacted by a number of press outlets keen to cover the occasion. John and I undertook a round of interviews with local and national media to further try to ensure that anyone who would be interested in attending wouldn’t miss out. In the meantime I worked on the memorial booklet and the wording for the inscription stone. It struck me that the wording couldn’t be too elaborate – it needed to balance economy of language with as succinct a summarisation as possible of the message we wanted to convey. There were many things I could’ve said but I knew I wouldn’t have a huge amount of space to work with. Each word would carry a considerable weight as essentially the wording could come to be seen to define Inga-Maria’s life.

Which is all the more so as Inga-Maria’s grave at the Ostfriedhof in Munich doesn’t actually have any headstone, instead what is there is something I would describe more as a grave marker. There is no wording on this grave marker other than her name and the year she was born and died. Anyone looking at Inga’s grave who didn’t know her would have no idea of the sort of person she was, of what interested her, or of what her personality was like. These are the very things she was denied the chance to reveal to people by the man who murdered her and those who assisted him, which is one of the main reasons I’m so intent on trying to communicate those qualities of hers through this blog and in as many interviews as I’m asked to do.

Inga-Maria Grave 1

The Living Dead: This never-before-seen photograph shows Inga-Maria and her father Josef’s graves at the Ostfriedhof in Munich, Bavaria. Photo by Inga Richardson ©2017

 

After John had asked me to write the inscription, I had sat up in bed that morning in my flat in Dublin and tried to imagine what Inga herself might choose for the wording. It’s a subject I’d imagine most people rarely ponder, as it’s an understandably uncomfortable thought to think of yourself no longer being alive but…What epitaph would you pick for yourself if you could choose a few lines to summarise your life? It might be more difficult than you think. And as difficult as it might be to choose your own epitaph, imagine being tasked with writing the epitaph for someone you never met – and what’s more someone who has posthumously become so important to you, and indeed very significant to an increasingly large number of people, many of whom would in the future be taking time out of their day to travel to see the inscription stone and pay their respects. The stone would hopefully be a lasting testament to a person who none of us got to meet and who arrived almost totally unnoticed and unheralded in Larne on that Spring night in 1988 but whose incredibly-brief presence on Irish shores and it’s agonising aftermath continues to resonate in ways she never could have imagined on the evening she fatefully set sail from Stranraer Harbour. So, I knew the wording had to be perfect. Inga’s memory would deserve nothing less.

But…what to write? I instinctively felt that rather than grappling with any complicated ideas, I should start with the basic information that would need to preface any wording. And so I thought I’d reprise something I’ve written at the end of every part of this blog.

 

Inga-Maria Hauser
Born May 28th 1969
Died April 6th 1988
Never forgotten

 

Simple, but essential.

For the following lines however, I knew I wanted to make a statement that went beyond basic details, and into the realm of Inga’s personality and something that was important to her. The first thing that jumped into my mind here was music. She loved music of course, she sang and played music. And then I thought of friendship. The one character trait most associated with Inga-Maria is how sociable and friendly she was. The friends of hers I’ve spoken with all describe how easily she made friends, and how comfortable everyone felt in her company. Then-RUC Detective Chief Superintendent George Caskey when discussing Inga in 1988 had described her as “a friendly and outgoing young girl who made friends easily”. PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray described her in broadly similar terms to me during our recent meeting with him. So with that in mind it struck me that the best way to arrive at the perfect wording to complete the inscription stone would be to somehow combine her love of music with her love of friendship. And then it occurred to me – her favourite song, as revealed for the first time in Part 12 of this blog, was ‘Mocking Bird’ by Barclay James Harvest. That fact had been revealed to me by a man named Walter who was one of Inga’s teenage friends, who was one of the people who described her most vividly to me. So here I felt was an opportunity to combine her love of music and friendship. I scanned through the lyrics of ‘Mocking Bird’ and it was then that I realised that this song featured what would be the perfect lines to complete the wording on the inscription stone:

 

Time will see your tears run dry
There’s a mocking bird singing songs in the trees

 

However, there was more…For not only would the inclusion of this line reflect Inga’s passion for music and her favourite song, and it also had a connection with friendship in the form of it having been revealed to me by her friend, but it seemed to eerily foreshadow the circumstances of what had actually happened on the night she would have cried very real tears “in the trees”. There was an additional relevance I felt in the notion of a mocking bird – one could say the mocking bird in this case is Inga’s killer and his accomplices, possibly having a good laugh for much of the preceding thirty years while presumably mocking the efforts of the police for valiantly trying but at the time of writing having been unable to bring them to justice. Which brings me to the title of this chapter, Made of Stone. For one thing it is the title of a song by The Stone Roses released on March 6th 1989 exactly 11 months to the day after Inga was murdered, secondly the subject of this instalment focuses on a memorial marker that is literally made of stone, and thirdly the killer of Inga-Maria Hauser and his primary accomplices must have hearts made of stone to have apparently never struggled with the evil enormity of what they did to an innocent young girl who only wanted to give Northern Ireland a chance at the height of the Troubles, a time when so few other foreign tourists were willing to visit.

 

Chapter 44: Ceremony

IMG-20180406-WA0006

Come Together: Some of the public and press who attended the 30th anniversary memorial event for Inga-Maria at Ballypatrick Forest Park near Ballycastle. Photo by Keeley Moss ©2018

 

The dark clouds in bouquet above
For how long will this dark age last?
For how long must we wait to learn?

And can others see…
Or do they navigate in dark?

If you ever want to dock your dream
Well you’ll need love to guide your fragile ark

The Dukes of Stratosphear – ‘Little Lighthouse’

 

The scene at Ballypatrick Forest Park on April 6th 2018 as the minutes ticked down towards the commencement of the memorial event was that of rural Northern Ireland at its Wintry worst. Strong winds and a continuous downpour were more than matched by an extremely biting cold that honestly felt more severe than any I have ever known. Having been to Ballypatrick Forest many times now, for all of its deserved status as a stunningly-beautiful location that is home to all manner of fauna and flora and where wildlife thrives, it always seems to me to be significantly colder there than anywhere else. It’s by some distance the coldest place I’ve been, and that’s from someone from Dublin, a city that’s no stranger to inclement weather. The freezing cold was appropriate however, in that it held a certain kinship with the chilling circumstances of the events that had taken place there exactly thirty years previously.

John and Keeley at Inga's Memorial 6.4.18

Never Forgotten: John Dallat MLA and Keeley Moss examine the inscription stone for Inga-Maria at Ballypatrick Forest Park, Co. Antrim, April 6th 2018

 

The crowd of locals and other well-wishers, accompanied by a large media contingent, was already assembling as John and I made our approach by car, alongside Clare McCotter and John’s wife Anne Dallat. We had announced that the event was due to take place at 1pm, which was largely in order to facilitate the participation of the UTV Live news team, whose chief reporter Barbara McCann and producer Chris Hagan have always been supportive of our campaign on behalf of Inga-Maria. Barbara as a young reporter in 1988 had actually been present, in her words, “As the body of Inga-Maria was carried from the forest with a respect not shown to her by the man who murdered her”.

As the ceremony got underway it was apparent that a significant number of people had taken time out of their day to venture in some cases many miles to this distant and remote outdoors location, and all the more so amid such terrible weather. That made it feel even more special that people had chosen to put the memory of Inga to the forefront of their thoughts, and had made a special effort to be there. At this point the memorial booklets were distributed and the event commenced.

Rather than my describing the event as it unfolded, I think there’s no substitute for reality, so I shall let the following footage instead bring the day to life.

This is the way, step inside.

 

 

 

___________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Parts 17

With thanks to John Dallat MLA, Anne Dallat, Daniel Kane, Suzanne Wehrly-Kane, Mags McCaw, Inga Richardson and Peter Heathwood. There is a Light that Never Goes Out.

Photography by Justin Kernaghan, Inga Richardson and Keeley Moss.

‘Made of Stone’ written by Squire/Brown. Published by Zomba Music Publishers Ltd. ©1989

‘Mocking Bird’ written by John Lees. Publisher unknown ©1971

‘Little Lighthouse’ written by Andy Partridge. Published by Virgin Music Ltd ©1987

The Keeley Chronicles PART 16

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 16 Contents
Chapter 42: The Girl With April In Her Eyes
Acknowledgements for Part 16

 

Chapter 42: The Girl With April In Her Eyes

ing2

Expecting to Fly: A rare photo of Inga-Maria Hauser and her father Josef taken in the early 1980’s

 

There once was a King, who called for the Spring
For his world was still covered in snow
But the Spring had not been, for he was wicked and mean
In his winter-fields nothing would grow
And when a traveller called seeking help at the door
Only food and a bed for the night
The girl with April in her eyes

Oh, oh, oh, on and on she goes
Through the winter’s night, the wild wind and the snow
High, high, high, on and on she rides
Someone help the girl with April in her eyes

She rode through the night till she came to the light
By the firelight she died
Oh the morning was bright, all the world was snow-white
But when he came to the place where she lay
His field was ablaze with flowers on the grave
Of the girl with April in her eyes

Oh, oh, oh, on and on she goes
Through the winter’s night, the wild wind and the snow
High, high, high, on and on she flies

She is gone
The girl with April in her eyes

Chris de Burgh – ‘The Girl With April In Her Eyes’

 

Referencing a song by Chris de Burgh may seem more than a little incongruous for a blog that regularly includes lyrical quotations from such doyens of musical credibility and rock royalty as Joy Division, The Smiths and Microdisney. But I quote the velvet-voiced Irish crooner with good reason on this night, April 20th, which is 30 years from the night Inga-Maria Hauser’s remains were discovered in the remote westernmost section of Ballypatrick Forest Park by the horrified sheep farmer who found her.

“Someone help the girl with April in her eyes” goes one of Chris de Burgh’s lesser-known songs. A song that, believe it or not, was one of Inga-Maria Hauser’s favourites, as revealed to me by one of her teenage friends in Munich. As anyone with knowledge of the facts of this case would know, Inga-Maria was murdered on the night of April 6th 1988, with her body not being discovered until April 20th. I have always found one of the saddest and most chilling facts of this case to be that this “Girl with April in her Eyes”, whose dream was to travel through the UK and Ireland that April, had written a postcard in which she spoke of how she was “Going to Ireland tomorrow. I think I’m looking forward to that the best” only to be murdered within minutes or hours of the ferry docking in Larne that night.

Inga Maria’s body lay unattended and uncared-for for fourteen days in the forest. It bears repeating that, contrary to the erroneous claim made in many media reports that have been published over the years, she was not buried in a “shallow grave” or covered up in any way. She was dumped, discarded with a breathtaking callousness as if she was nothing, and left to the elements, with her clothing deliberately disturbed and all of her belongings scattered throughout the trees nearby. It is facts like these that make John Dallat MLA and I feel all the more motivated to keep up the campaign to seek truth and justice on Inga’s behalf, especially as she does not have any family members in Ireland to fight for her. But as was made abundantly clear at our memorial ceremony at Ballypatrick Forest Park on April 6th 2018, the community of Co. Antrim have taken Inga to their hearts, and that community numbers some of the finest people I’ve had the pleasure to know. How bittersweet that this teenage traveller, who arrived in this country unknown and unnoticed by all but those involved in her murder, has posthumously gathered thousands more friends than she ever could have imagined.

The photo that I’ve chosen to illustrate this instalment is one of Inga-Maria and her father Josef rock-climbing together in the early 1980’s. It is a rare and very special photograph that, although it’s been published a couple of places before, has never been widely circulated. For quite some time I’ve intended using it in a blog post but I wanted to wait for the perfect moment. This to me, the night of the 30th anniversary of Inga’s remains being discovered, is that moment. The phrase ‘Every picture tells a story’ is I think very true, and this picture I believe tells so much. In the background there lies a beautiful clear blue sky, the sort of dreamy, balmy sky that when overhead you look up at and bask in the glory of life, aware that you’re fortunate to be alive and in a position to witness such a stunning sight on the ultimate canvas, nature’s very own easel.

Inga looks very happy in the photo, in the first flush of her impending adolescence. I can imagine from looking at this photo that she was delighted to be outdoors with her Dad, at his side as they navigated the rocks together, spending time together as father and daughter in a way that’s only much later apparent just how precious that time was. And in this case that was far much more so, for obvious reasons in the light of what would transpire only a handful of years later in Northern Ireland. But looking at the photo now, it is heartbreaking to think that at the moment this photo was taken, as Josef Hauser and his beloved daughter paused on the rocks with such a beautiful clear blue sky above them, that all the hopes and dreams that he would have had for her, and that she would have had for herself, would never be able to be realised. Imagine being the girl in that photo, and imagine at that moment wondering just how your life was going to turn out…Which career paths would you pursue, where would you live, what countries would you visit, what art would you create, would you get married or perhaps have children? Except in Inga’s case, virtually none of those things would happen. Because within just months of becoming an adult she would get off a ferry and be murdered, and dumped in a forest, and for thirty years (and counting) those who are responsible are yet to spend so much as a minute in prison for it.

A further scan of the lyrics of ‘The Girl With April In Her Eyes’ reveals a striking number of eerie parallels with what ensued on the night Inga-Maria Hauser arrived in Northern Ireland: “He was wicked and mean…When a traveller called seeking help at the door…Through the winter’s night, the wild wind and the snow…Someone help the girl with April in her eyes…With flowers on the grave, of the girl with April in her eyes… She is gone, the girl with April in her eyes”. I found it extraordinary to learn, in the light of those lyrics and the circumstances of the fateful April night that echoes so many of the lines in the song, that this had been one of her favourite songs. Something regular readers of this blog will be aware of because I’ve referred to this a number of times over the past two years, most recently several times throughout Part 15, is something that became a feature of the PSNI’s 30th anniversary press release, namely a line Inga-Maria wrote in her diary on the last day of her life which was “Going to Glasgow now. Snowy mountains, wild landscape”. And of course those details too were unwittingly foreshadowed in the lyrics to ‘The Girl With April in Her Eyes’.

But on this day, April 20th, the second landmark anniversary in this case to occur this month, let us respond to that request issued in the song Inga-Maria used to play on the record player in the youth club she attended at St. Gabriel’s Church in Munich during the mid-1980’s, which poignantly was also the church where her requiem was later held on May 25th 1988 (further eerie coincidences are that Inga-Maria’s funeral occurred on both my birthday and the birthday of Clare McCotter who wrote the triptych of poems about Inga which I published in Part 15 and another strange but far sadder coincidence is that Inga’s remains were tragically discovered on her mother’s birthday). The line in the song that goes, “Someone help the girl with April in her eyes”. Let us redouble our efforts to help this girl with April in her eyes by showing those among the small group of people in the community who are in the position to enable police to bring those responsible for Inga’s murder to justice that they can do so with complete support from the rural communities of Co. Antrim, so many of whom I know deeply want this to happen.

It’s time to help the girl with April in her eyes.

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Author’s note

I mentioned in Part 15 that it was my intention to publish in Part 16 an account of my and John Dallat MLA’s recent meeting with PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray at police headquarters in Belfast but on account of today being the 30th anniversary of Inga Maria’s remains being discovered, I decided to postpone that instalment for a future post and instead produced an instalment for Part 16 that is I think more fitting to coincide with such a sombre occasion.

_____________________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Parts 16

With heartfelt thanks to Walter.

‘The Girl With April In Her Eyes’ written by Chris de Burgh. Published by Big Secret Music Inc. ASCAP ©1979

The Keeley Chronicles PART 15

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 15 Contents
Chapter 40: A Flower Attracting
Chapter 41: Legacy
Acknowledgements for Part 15

 

Chapter 40: A Flower Attracting

Inga 1988 RUC poster - Cropped

Reaching Out: A portion of the original 1988 RUC poster that was distributed widely at the time requesting information from the general public

 

Beauty finds refuge in herself

She is suffering
You exist within her shadow

Beauty she is scarred into man’s soul
A flower attracting lust, vice and sin

Manic Street Preachers – ‘She Is Suffering’

 

Friday April 6th 2018 marks thirty years from the night Inga-Maria Hauser arrived in Northern Ireland and was subjected to the vicious and ruthless assault that culminated in her murder practically before she’d even set foot on land. On the 30th anniversary there has yet to be anyone held accountable for what remains the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland.

Recently John Dallat MLA and I travelled to police headquarters in Belfast for a meeting with the man leading the investigation into Inga-Maria’s murder, PSNI Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray, to inform him of our plans for a first-ever memorial in Northern Ireland for Inga-Maria and to discuss the investigation in general. I hope to tactfully discuss some aspects of what was a lengthy and very positive meeting in the next instalment, Part 16, of The Keeley Chronicles.

Many people have mentioned to me over the two years I’ve been working on her case that there was nothing to mark the area where Inga Maria’s life was taken. With that in mind, on Friday April 6th at 1pm myself and John Dallat MLA are to host a special event at the entrance to Ballypatrick Forest Park just outside Ballycastle at the northernmost tip of County Antrim to mark the 30th anniversary and where we plan to unveil the first-ever inscription stone for Inga-Maria. The event will also feature a performance of music that will hopefully accurately reflect Inga-Maria’s artistic nature and her love of music. All are welcome to attend and I would encourage you to do so.

I would like to extend thanks to the followers of this blog for your patience as I’ve waited to follow-up Part 14. I generally publish a new instalment each month without fail but I’ve left a three-month gap this time, quite deliberately, out of respect to the PSNI as soon as I became aware that their preference was for a lull in all coverage of the case in the months leading up to the 30th anniversary in order to focus the attention of the press and public on the next major concerted push in April and not risk diluting the impact of such a landmark anniversary. In the meantime I’ve been working away quietly behind the scenes in a number of ways. But as we approach the 30th anniversary, I intend for this to be the first of three new instalments on the blog in relatively quick succession, which will hopefully compensate for the paucity of new posts over the last few months.

With each instalment of The Keeley Chronicles I always endeavour to try and do something new, focusing on a different aspect each time, partly because like many creative people I have an aversion to repetition and partly due to the fact that I’m mindful that this case is now on the cusp of its 30th year and I am wary of going over too much familiar ground. So the main theme of this month’s instalment is something I haven’t covered before, focusing primarily on poetry and song lyrics inspired by Inga-Maria’s short life and the long shadow her murder has cast ever since.

In recent days I’ve been heartened to receive not one but two sets of poetry written in honour of her. The first is actually a trilogy – or “triptych” – of short poems penned by a strikingly-talented poet from Kilrea, Co. Derry named Clare McCotter. As you’ll see, her ability at weaving words is quite brilliant. The triptych was recently published on the Poetry24 website and I have received Clare’s permission to publish it in full on The Keeley Chronicles (see below). It is a beautiful and very moving homage to Inga-Maria.

But that’s not all – I was very touched to receive a poem written by John Dallat MLA about Inga-Maria which he completed roughly around the same time as Clare’s poems. As anyone who takes an interest in politics in Northern Ireland will likely be aware, John is someone with a long and illustrious career in politics and who currently represents East Derry on behalf of the SDLP. He holds the notable distinction of having been the first-ever nationalist mayor of Coleraine and also spent nine years as Deputy Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly. But even more importantly in my opinion, he has been the only public figure to repeatedly call for justice in Inga-Maria’s case and previously made a direct approach to the then-RUC Chief Constable Ronald Flanagan. It is clear from numerous public statements he has published regarding Inga-Maria’s case over the years and from all my communication with him that what happened to Inga-Maria has had a profound impact on him. John’s touching poem is entitled No Beauty Hath Ever Been Seen and displays a real depth of feeling and sincerity. It is published below for the first time anywhere.

To make it a trilogy of works inspired by Inga-Maria, I’ve decided to round out this ‘Poetic Edition’ of The Keeley Chronicles with a piece of my own, ‘Plundered Past’, the lyrics to the song I wrote about her which was released as the second single by my now-defunct band Session Motts. I generally don’t like separating words from music as I prefer for the lyrics I write to live where I believe they belong: inside the song, beyond the clear comprehension that can strip a song of what I think is its most essential strength, its mystery. But I want to make an exception in this case, and publish the lyrics here for the first time in full (the Belfast Telegraph previously published the lyrics to the chorus of ‘Plundered Past’ on Page 3 of their July 12th 2017 issue).

For all the success my old band had with our two other singles last year (neither of which were about Inga-Maria) my own personal highlight of 2017 was in hearing one particular line in ‘Plundered Past’ regularly on the radio down South and seeing it as a posthumous achievement for Inga-Maria from beyond the grave, in defiance of her killers who must have thought they’d permanently silenced her on that night in Ballypatrick Forest. Although the line from Inga-Maria’s diary that I quoted in the song may at first glance appear to be innocuous, mundane even, and only consists of a mere four words – those being “Snowy mountains, wild landscape” – which she wrote on the train on her way to Glasgow on what would turn out to be the last day of her life, April 6th 1988, I felt there was something beautiful about the way those four words looked and sounded. I also feel that that line best expresses Inga-Maria’s wonderment at the beauty of nature and her appreciation of the world around her.

Snowy mountains, wild landscape. So simple and yet so descriptive and evocative, setting the scene exactly as she saw and perceived it on a Spring afternoon in 1988 as she gazed excitedly out of the window of a British Rail train while it whizzed past trees and fields en route to the Scottish city as the 1980’s itself raced towards the end of the decade. What makes those four words I think even more poignant is that they display the restless zest of a young person in love with the world, in love with life itself, living out a dream (and that is no overstatement on my behalf – Inga-Maria’s mum Almut was quoted as saying to the Bild newspaper in 2011 that “It was her dream” to travel to the UK and Ireland).

Snowy mountains, wild landscape. As Inga-Maria jotted down those four words in ink that day, she could never have imagined that they would be some of the last words she would write, that within hours she would be erased from this existence seven weeks and one day short of her 19th birthday, the precise circumstances of which remain a secret maintained by a clan of clones bereft of souls. She also couldn’t have possibly imagined that those four words which she penned in her diary as the train tracks beneath her feet clattered as the wheels met steel, each portion of track unwittingly carrying her closer to imminent catastrophe, that those four words would more than 29 years later be quoted in the form of a song inspired by her, and would resound from radios throughout the South of Ireland for several months (although it has to be said, to the obliviousness of most listeners who generally wouldn’t have known what or who the song was about). Plus it’s worth bearing in mind that Inga-Maria’s case has a much lower profile in my native South of Ireland than it has in the North. But it’s something no one can take from me that, however mundane it may sound, I managed to get something that she wrote so innocently and innocuously on a train in April 1988 onto the airwaves in 2017, and which I see as a posthumous vindication, one where the last line of the song would come true upon its release – “I’ll give you the voice they denied”.

 

Chapter 41: Legacy

glasgow-works-1-1988

The View From Here: British Rail train on the outskirts of Glasgow in 1988. Inga-Maria would have taken in this view on her approach to the Scottish city on the last day of her life

 

Triptych

By Claire McCotter ©2018

Back Packer

She is a swallow
on the heart hammering
brink of blue
for weeks her sleep
silvery with dreams
of maps and moons
and magnetic fields
now her bright brown eyes
on the edge of flight
the leap the drop
the rise the rise
the jolt of sky
the swoop the curve
the turn
her maiden voyage
a practice run
wound down at dusk
on a telephone line
her throat full
of sorrel and stars and sun
and miles
and miles of blue
and the miles and miles
of blue to come.

  

Solace

In her bedroom
she is a student of song
practising
guitar chords
before pressing record
not knowing
every time
her mother
presses rewind
the gold crocus
on her child’s tongue
candles the night.

 

Self Seeding

Left broken
in the place seed fell
they brought
their corn haired girl
back home
thinking of those
she might
have brought
to them
her mother
smoothed the earth
out over
her shoulders.
And yet
still in the forest
her dark eyes
blent with theirs
she waits at dusk
among the sika deer.

 

No Beauty Hath Ever Been Seen
A poem by John Dallat MLA ©2018

No beauty hath ever been seen
To compare with the Munich queen
Clad in blue jeans
And full of beans
Looking forward to meeting a mate
My God she is so stunning, so sedate.

Offered a lift in a lorry
Inga-Maria has nothing to worry
No tourist before has come to grief
For her parents at home this surely is a relief.
The lorry is for Belfast or so he said
My God hopefully Inga-Maria is not being misled

A Province-wide search has begun
Is Inga-Maria in trouble or just having fun?
Sighted here and there, far and wide
Her family desperately want her at their side
They know she would not wander
And to strangers she would not pander

More sightings, who did she embrace
Surely this isn’t a murder case?
Inga-Maria is an intelligent child
Bright and creative, loving and mild
Who in their right mind would steal her life?
But such thoughts are now so very rife.

Sadly, those fears were well grounded
Inga-Maria in a forest has foundered
Died defending her honour
As deadly blows rained down upon her
A talented musician, a beauty so stunning
Please God her killers have exhausted their cunning.

 

‘Plundered Past’
Song lyrics by Keeley Moss ©2017

Singing The Beatles’ ‘Let It Be’
In the far-off lands of a plundered past
On this street lived a family
In the far-off lands of a plundered past

You could use your pencils and paint
In the far-off lands of a plundered past
“Snowy mountains, wild landscape…”
In the far-off lands of a plundered past
In the far-off lands of a plundered past

I love you, I live you
The old has become new
You crept in the back door of my mind
I need it, I feel it
I won’t let time steal it
I’ll give you the voice they denied

Eerie glow that bathed the streets below
In the far-off lands of a plundered past
Twenty to 10 they’re lining up
In the far-off lands of a plundered past

Scratches on his face hint at Hell
In the far-off lands of a plundered past
In the far-off lands of a plundered past

I love you, I live you
The old has become new
You crept in the back door of my mind.
I need it, I feel it
I won’t let time steal it
I’ll give you the voice they denied

You crept in the back door of my mind

I’ll give you the voice they denied

 

_____________________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 15

With thanks to John Dallat MLA and Clare McCotter.

‘She Is Suffering’ lyrics by Richey James. Published by Sony Music Publishing ©1994

Triptych: Back Packer/Solace/Self Seeding written by Claire McCotter. Published by Copyright Control ©2018

No Beauty Hath Ever Been Seen Poem written by John Dallat MLA. Published by Copyright Control ©2018

‘Plundered Past’ lyrics by Keeley Moss. Published by Copyright Control ©2017

The Keeley Chronicles PART 14

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

PART 14 Contents
Chapter 38 – Universal Traveller
Chapter 39 – Caught in the Headlights
Acknowledgements for Part 14

 

Chapter 38: Universal Traveller

Newsletter article April 25th 1988

Murder Story: Article published in the April 25th 1988 edition of the News Letter newspaper in the aftermath of Inga-Maria’s murder. This was the first time a photo of Inga-Maria was ever published. Note the misspelling of her surname as “Hausser” and the erroneous information that her father’s name was “Hans Hausser” when in fact it was Josef Hauser and the incorrect claim that she was “believed to be hitch-hicking (sic) around Northern Ireland” when she had in fact never hitchhiked anywhere

 

In this sprawling landscape
How’d you know just where I’d be?

Real Estate – ‘Horizon’

 

Something I have dwelled on a great deal is the distance between what’s known and what’s unknown in the case – and my underlying desire to find a way to bridge the gap between that crucial chasm. In an interview published in 2012 the detective leading the investigation, Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray told RTE Crime correspondent and author Barry Cummins exactly what the police need in order to be able to advance the investigation into Inga-Maria’s murder, “What we need is the piece of information which helps to put all of this into proper perspective, that might help us understand the chain of events that brought Inga-Maria from Larne to Ballypatrick Forest, and that we learn what happened on that journey, be it on the coast road or an inland road en route which completes the picture”.

Inga-Maria knew no one in Northern Ireland, and she knew no one in the Irish Republic either. No one anticipated her arrival in Larne on the night of April 6th 1988. There was no one expecting her to arrive in Belfast that night by a certain time and therefore no one in a position to raise the alarm when she didn’t arrive. It is my information that those responsible for her brutal murder encountered her onboard the Galloway Princess. But how is it that they managed to notice her in the first place when almost none of the 420 other passengers aboard had?

I find it incredible that out of the 422 people on board the ferry that night, a mere two people (who were traveling together, so not even two separate people) were the only ones who reported spotting Inga-Maria at any point during the ferry crossing. I recently discovered some facts that are not widely-known – and these are indeed facts – verified facts, not just the sort of urban myths and Chinese whispers that have dogged this case, which I can reveal here. I have learned in recent times that as Inga-Maria was entering the ferry terminal in Stranraer on the evening of April 6th 1988 for the ferry journey that would unwittingly change the course of her life irrevocably, the two people who would later spot her on board the ferry had accidentally bumped into her as she was approaching the doors that led to the walkway up to the ferry. They were two women from Northern Ireland, one young woman and one older woman, who immediately followed Inga-Maria up the stairwell and onto the ferry. And what’s more, each of these two women separately spotted Inga-Maria at points during the crossing, and furthermore in two very different parts of the ferry, which is also something I had not been aware of until only recently.

The first sighting of her on the ferry itself was when the older woman saw Inga-Maria opening a door that led to the lounge, and watched as she crossed the lounge. She was still on her own but – and this is very interesting – she was without her backpack and any of her other bags. Bear in mind that her backpack and bags contained her expensive camera, her diary, her passport, and all her other belongings. Would she – would you – leave such essential and valuable personal items totally unguarded in a public place with more than 400 people in the vicinity, none of whom you knew? I know that I wouldn’t have. I consider it most unlikely she would have left those items unguarded, even just for a few minutes while she visited the lavatory or wherever it was that she was going when she crossed the lounge. It has never been established for certain but I consider it likely that she left her belongings with one or more people who had befriended her onboard the ferry, and considering these people have never come forward or made themselves known to investigators, I consider it highly likely that if that was so, then that person or persons included her killer or killers.

The second time Inga-Maria was spotted onboard the Galloway Princess that night was actually up on deck, and this sighting was made by the young Northern Irish woman who had followed her directly on to the ferry when boarding in Stranraer earlier that evening. This time Inga-Maria had gone up on deck for some fresh air and to take in the sight of the Irish Sea as the ferry made its way towards the port of Larne. The young woman, whose name is known to me but whom I have not spoken with so I shall refrain from naming as her name has never been published anywhere, saw Inga-Maria lifting up the ferry’s on-deck telescope through which a clearer view of the approaching land could be made. Again, Inga-Maria was alone and again she did not have her backpack or any of her additional bags with her. With the exception of a sighting made by a third female passenger aboard the ferry that night of Inga-Maria entering a lorry as the ferry docked in Larne, a sighting that wasn’t reported until 2005 and which has never been confirmed to have been Inga-Maria (this sighting I discussed earlier in Part 3 of The Keeley Chronicles) that was the last time she was ever seen alive.

Imagine being one of those women, imagine knowing in the aftermath of her murder that you very briefly crossed paths with someone who was about to be erased from this existence in such a tragic and shocking way, and in such a standalone case that the news of the release of her singing and playing guitar, something not heard before in Ireland or the UK became the lead item on the main evening UTV News on November 2nd 2017, almost thirty years after the murder. Imagine knowing that that night aboard the Galloway Princess that you were that close to the truth behind one of the most baffling murder mysteries of the last three decades, and yet still even for those women the precise truth of what followed remains tantalisingly out of reach. What would have seemed such mundane moments for them at the time – accidentally bumping into someone as they entered the ferry terminal in Stranraer, following her onto the ferry, later seeing her crossing the ferry lounge, and later still seeing her up on deck gazing out in wonder, hope and expectation towards the land she would barely set foot on before her life was so brutally taken. These apparently mundane moments were to become some of the most important and memorable details of those women’s own lives, for it’s not every day or even every decade that you become one of the only witnesses to have observed at least part of a sequence of events that are still making news headlines thirty years later.

All the same though, even considering the fact that due to the two Northern Irish women accidentally bumping into Inga-Maria as she entered the ferry terminal in Stranraer and them subsequently following her directly onto the ferry itself making it more likely that they would remember her, I still think it very strange that no one else among the hundreds of passengers later tracked down and questioned by the then-RUC reported having seen her on board the ferry. She was strikingly good-looking, and more unusual still she was a lone young woman, an 18 year-old tourist travelling to a region that was at that time in the midst of a vicious internecine conflict. How the hell could she not have been spotted by more people? Two out of 422? I know from the correspondence I have received that I’m not alone in finding that ridiculous.

Newsletter April 21st 1988 sidebar

Inside: From the April 21st 1988 edition of the News Letter newspaper. This was the first-ever newspaper report of Inga-Maria’s murder

 

Don’t believe his heart, I beg you please it lies
There’s murder in the eyes of men and treason in the sky

She crossed the room in honour and took his words in vain
He smiled the smile of murder…

The House of Love – ‘32nd Floor’

 

Another point I’ve mulled over a lot is relevant to the title of this chapter – Universal Traveller, which is the title of an excellent, eerie song by the French band Air and a piece of music that always makes me think of what it might have been like on board the Galloway Princess that night. For one thing, that’s what Inga was – a universal traveller. She could’ve been anyone – anyone’s daughter, anyone’s sister, anyone’s friend. To me she’s symbolic of young people everywhere with hopes and dreams setting off on their first journey abroad. Except where the vast majority of them will return home, ready to regale with their tales of the road, Inga never did and never will.

The murder of Inga-Maria Hauser is as I said at the beginning of Part 1 of The Keeley Chronicles, the only case of its kind – the only sexually-motivated murder of a tourist in Northern Irish history. But for the individual who drove her off that ferry and whoever else who may have accompanied him, she arrived totally unnoticed in Northern Ireland on the night she died and instead of receiving the warm Irish greeting she deserved, was instead subjected to a horrendous ordeal, which has long since left a significant shadow hanging in its wake and which will never be resolved for as long as her killers and those shielding them carry on denying her justice like they denied her her life. And yet although Inga may have been ‘just’ one person, she is in a way every backpacker, every overseas explorer, every human being who ventures outdoors to see the other side of this life. Not an hour goes by where I don’t think of her, and I know there are likewise so many people out there all across Northern Ireland who have never forgotten her, not least John Dallat who has campaigned long and hard for answers and justice on Inga-Maria’s behalf. I notice that she’s particularly on my mind whenever I’m in a train station or at a bus depot or in an airport, any of those places with a transitory ambience, that palpable melancholy atmosphere that seems unique to those places, where so many people are constantly moving, fleetingly passing in transit on their way from one point to another and perhaps leaving only the faintest trace of their souls as they roam.

 

Chapter 39 – Caught in the Headlights

Newsletter article April 22nd 1988

Caught in the Headlines: From the April 22nd 1988 edition of the News Letter newspaper, this was among the first full-length articles on Inga-Maria’s murder. Note football legend George Best pictured alongside

 

So maybe you’re standing
In some foreign town
You’ve walked for miles
And your jeans and your curls
Are bleached and split

As the words on these pages
Maybe I’m reminded
Caught in the headlights

So you’re ten miles out
Of this city at night
When do coloured lights
Become paint and glass and dust?
How I wonder
What light to trust?
The light of the distance
Or the candle that might just burn?

Moonshine and starlight
Pockets full of rainbows

It will call you
Angel
When the world knows your name

Deacon Blue – ‘The World Is Lit By Lightning’

 

The one thing that has always puzzled me most about Inga-Maria’s murder isn’t the fact that she had seemingly taken a lift on the night of her death – even though that was something considered very much out-of-character, and actually unnecessary (due to her being in possession of a valid Interrail pass) and as a result something that has long baffled the detectives investigating her case. No. I felt I could relatively easily rationalise and envisage the sort of scenario that would have given rise to her diverting from her established code of practice, one I’ve outlined in a theory I spoke of in an interview I gave the Belfast Telegraph in July 2017. Inga-Maria’s last-ever diary entry written in Stranraer before boarding the ferry began with the heartbreaking words “Wonder where I stay tonight?”, and this I feel makes it at the very least conceivable that she would have been receptive to an offer of a lift specifically to a B&B or a hostel, considering it was night-time when the ferry docked at Larne and had she caught the train from Larne Harbour as planned it would have been approximately 11pm when she would have arrived at Belfast’s York Road station, far from an ideal time to arrive in a totally-unfamiliar city, especially considering it was in the middle of a war and she was an 18 year-old girl on her own with no friends or family there to call on, and bearing in mind this was an age long before smartphones and Google Maps made navigation of an unfamiliar territory so much easier.

No, what mystifies me more than anything else in this story is one very striking and very unusual anomaly, something I consider so unlikely as to be possibly unprecedented in the annals of criminal history. How could Inga-Maria be the only tourist ever to have been the victim of a sexually-motivated murder in the province? The extent of ruthlessness and savagery and the degree of confidence, arrogance even, deployed in the course of her battery and murder point to an individual or individuals who have committed such a crime at the very least once before, possibly numerous times. In all my many years of reading True Crime I have not once encountered a killer or killers who were ‘The finished article’ from the get-go, whose murderous methods emerged fully-honed and developed to the extent that Inga’s killers were. And yet, in 1988 there was simply no precedent in Northern Ireland – and what’s more, in all the years since there’s been no subsequent instance – of a sexually-motivated murder of a tourist taking place there. And furthermore, police went to the trouble in the last decade of painstakingly compiling a list of approximately 1000 ‘male nominals’ considered by them to be the individuals most likely to be capable of a crime involving sexual violence against a woman, on the basis of a previous conviction or due to having come into consideration in some way during the incredibly long-running investigation, and yet even in a geographical area as small as that of Northern Ireland, and with all of the geographical and behavioural profilers enlisted by the PSNI reportedly united in their belief that the offender or offenders were “very local” to the area where her body was eventually discovered, still the identity of the “crime scene donor” as the PSNI have pointedly described the man whose DNA profile they possess proved frustratingly, maddeningly elusive. For months I had put the various permutations of this equation to work in my mind. And time and time again I arrived back where I’d started. She couldn’t have been the first, the last, the only one. And yet the evidence shows that yes, she was, and is.

The first, the last, and so far the only. Caught in the harsh headlights of history. Lured by the urge to wander, purged from the surface of the Earth, expiring in the expanse between the digits of the missing minutes that separate day and night from any afterlife. Squandered by a monster, the forever-frozen future of a universal traveller.

___________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2017

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 14

Heartfelt thanks to Gary Watson and Inga Richardson.

‘Horizon’ written by Martin Courtney IV. Published by Domino Publishing Company ©2014

‘32nd Floor’ written by Guy Chadwick. Published by Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC ©1990

‘The World Is Lit By Lightning’ written by Ross/Prime. Published by Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC ©1989

The Keeley Chronicles PART 13

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

PART 13 Contents
Chapter 36 – You Do Me Wrong
Chapter 37 – Begging You
Acknowledgements for Part 13

 

Chapter 36: You Do Me Wrong

Inga classic pic better quality

Once Upon a Long Ago: Inga-Maria Hauser photgraphed in early 1988

 

Alas, my love, you do me wrong
To cast me off discourteously
And I have loved you oh so long
Delighting in your company

Greensleeves was all my joy
Greensleeves was my delight
Greensleeves was my heart of gold
And who but my lady Greensleeves

If you intend to be this way
It does the more enrapture me
And even so I still remain
A lover in captivity

Greensleeves was all my joy
Greensleeves was my delight
Greensleeves was my heart of gold
And who but my lady Greensleeves

Greensleeves, now farewell, adieu
God, I pray he will prosper thee
For I am still thy lover true
Come once again and love me

Come once again and love me

Greensleeves (Trad.)

 

Inga-Maria Hauser loved music. In the last part of The Keeley Chronicles I revealed for the first time that her favourite song was ‘Mocking Bird’ by Barclay James Harvest. Another fact that has never been in the public domain before now is that, like myself, she played guitar. She could also sing and loved to do so.

I have sought and received the permission of the Hauser family to make available, for the first time ever an extraordinary recording Inga-Maria made of herself singing and playing guitar. For one thing it is the unprecedented sound of her voice, the voice that was permanently silenced the night she arrived in Northern Ireland. It is the sound of a voice and guitar-playing that never had the chance to be recorded in a professional studio, never had a chance to be heard on a concert stage or from a radio. It is a sound that never had the chance to reach beyond her Munich bedroom. Until now.

It is the saddest and most beautiful thing I have ever heard. And is all the more heart-wrenching for the fact that when it was recorded she could have had no idea that within a relatively short period of time from when she made this home recording the ordeal she would go through in County Antrim that would result in her life being taken after what had been up to then a joyous week spent sightseeing abroad on her own for the first and only time.

The song you will hear is ‘Greensleeves’, the traditional English folk song and tune. Hearing how Inga-Maria handles the song indicates to me that she was someone who had a natural grasp of melody and was an instinctive interpreter of song, all then more so when you consider that the lyrics are not in her native language. The sparse, stark atmosphere and the acoustic finger-picking style in which she performs it is redolent of Nick Drake circa Pink Moon or the more tender and reflective moments on Suzanne Vega’s eponymous debut album. The recording is undated but was recorded at some point in the 1980’s.

It is the sound of a teenage girl alone in her bedroom, in the process of developing her music and honing her raw talent. And raw it is, but I think that makes it all the more human and all the more moving. There are none of the production tricks or sound engineering or mixing techniques involved in modern studio recordings, or even studio recordings as they were back in the 1980s. But there’s an expression I was once told that is particularly relevant where playing music is concerned, and that is “Less force, more power”. This is definitely the case where Inga-Maria’s music is concerned. As you will hear, when the song first commences she sounds a little hesitant, like many people who haven’t been singing and playing guitar simultaneously for very long. But when she hits the chorus her voice suddenly arcs up into an incredibly-beautiful falsetto. “Less force, more power” is something sadly not understood by so many people who are overly familiar with The X Factor and TV shows of that ilk and who have seemingly come to think that the bombastic bawling and over-emotional caterwauling that passes for “singing” on those soulless shows is a guide to being a good vocalist. But singing in such a way divests a song of the pure motive of what music should be all about which I believe is simply singing your own truth in your own voice. It’s not about volume or range, it’s not about fake vocal mannerisms – what I call “vocal gymnastics” – it’s not about technical proficiency and being a virtuoso show-off, it’s not about flashy clothes, and it’s certainly not about becoming rich or facilitating a path to the ultimately fallow fields of fame. I consider Gram Parsons to be the greatest singer to have ever lived and yet he was untutored and never had a hit record in his life. But he possessed a voice of such spiritual transcendence that the writer Ben Fong Torres in describing the song ‘She’ on Gram’s 1972 solo album G.P said that merely hearing Gram singing the word “Hallelujah” in that song could convert someone to Christianity, such was the spirit and emotional force with which he managed to convey that word in that song.

Music is the pursuit of truth through artistic expression. And the sound of Inga-Maria Hauser singing ‘Greensleeves’ is about as true and artistically-expressive as it gets. Although it’s not her own composition I think she makes the song her own – no mean feat given that the song was written several hundred years ago. To my mind, singing is more than merely a means to convey the melody of a song and its lyrics – singing is the sound of the soul. I believe the human voice is a portal through which the soul can be seen. In other words, if you’re shallow or a lousy human being, that will be apparent from the sound of your voice if you sing. If you’re a person of depth and kindness, it will be equally evident from the sound of your singing voice. It can’t be concealed – whatever is there will be revealed. And so it is I think very much apparent from the sound of Inga-Maria’s voice the kind of person she was.

It can be difficult to envisage now, and for some of the younger readers of this blog it might seem hard to believe at all but back in 1988 when Inga-Maria was murdered there was no internet and it was so much harder for someone to release their music independently and have instant access to a potential audience of people around the world. I consider this recording the most precious thing I have ever come in contact with. It’s an incredible honour to have been granted the opportunity to make this available for the first time and although given the circumstances that brings with it a heavy responsibility, my light and my guide is the compass of compassion that has steered me throughout the creation and promotion of this blog.

 

Chapter 37 – Begging You

Inga 6

Inga-Maria Hauser in her bedroom in Haidhausen, Munich. The very cassette deck on which she taped herself singing ‘Greensleeves’ can be seen to her left in this photo

 

Here is a warning, the sky will divide
Since I took off the lid now there’s nowhere to hide
Now I’m begging you, begging you

Weigh it and say it, is it all in a name?
Does it call you or maul you and drive you insane?
Can it make you remember, time is a place
Now I’m begging you, begging you

The Stone Roses – ‘Begging You’

 

When I was fifteen years old I read an interview in the NME with Deborah Curtis, the widow of Ian Curtis, lead singer of my favourite band the legendary Manchester group Joy Division, and in it she described him in a way that has never left my mind. To her he was “A doorway to another world”. And this recording of Inga-Maria’s, taped in her bedroom on a long-ago day in the mid-1980s, I see in similar terms. For here is that very thing – “A doorway to another world”, that captured a moment in time that can never be repeated. A snapshot of a soul in motion, a poignant portrait of a person who was so viciously and ruthlessly erased from this life for no good reason. It was in the words of then Detective Superintendent Pat Steele when speaking about Inga-Maria’s case in 2005, “A stupid and pointless waste”.

That said I have agonised over when would be the right time to publish this recording, or even whether to publish it at all. It’s a heavy responsibility to handle something like this, and I want to be as certain as I can be that I’m handling it the right way. It can be a cruel and harsh world out there, and I know from experience the courage required to set foot on a stage or in a radio studio and put your voice, your heart and essentially your inner self on the line which then enables others to be in a position where they can critically maul you for it. And even though it isn’t my voice or my guitar playing on this recording, I have come to feel such a degree of protectiveness towards this person who is not around to defend herself nor has any family members who are in a position to publicly do so on her behalf. I’ve grappled with the question of whether or not I think Inga-Maria would have welcomed the release of what I think is the best recording she made. It is impossible to know of course, but she made this recording to capture the sound of her music, and I would venture a guess that she would have liked the music she was in the process of making to reach a receptive audience. The alternative is it one day getting lost, or the tape degrading and never having the chance to be heard, and I think that would be a further tragedy. And heaven knows there’s enough tragedy involved in this case already.

Back in the 1980s the opportunity to release a cassette recording made in your bedroom simply would not have been possible, as you would have been reliant on a major or independent record label to sanction its release, which their corporate mentality wouldn’t have entertained. And of course the eighties with all of the high-gloss production values of that era was an even more difficult and uncomprehending environment for a creative artist to try and have material released that possessed such pure, raw and rudimentary elements. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, it is now possible to override the prohibitive gatekeepers of the music business and utilise this technology at my disposal to try to achieve something outside the remit of the music industry and their commerce-oriented machinery. I see this as a chance for Inga-Maria to be seen in the wider world as more than just a murder victim. I have given a lot of thought to whether it would be of benefit to her memory to publish this, and I think it undoubtedly is. And I think it shows even more of her artistic potential and of what she could have gone on to do with her life had she been allowed to.

But I’ll admit there is another reason I’ve decided to publish it. And that’s because I think it might be the best chance yet as we approach the 30th anniversary of her murder – maybe the best chance there will ever be at this stage – of trying to convince the person shielding Inga-Maria’s killers to find it in her heart to do the right thing before it’s too late. In doing so I’m appealing directly to that person, and I’m begging them – begging you – to do so for the sake of Inga-Maria’s soul, and for your own soul, for your own humanity, to release the immense burden that you must have been carrying with you for almost thirty years now. What a thing to be able to achieve in your life to be the one to bring closure to the family of a murdered daughter and sister. It’s a cliché but its true, especially so in this case – “Better late than never”. Just look for that strength and you’ll find that strength – nothing matters more. It is beyond wrong to be prepared to exit this existence leaving this unresolved. The Hauser family need justice and Inga-Maria’s soul must be crying out for it too. There must be some reason this is on my mind all the time, I’m an indie musician and writer from Dublin with no prior connection to Northern Ireland and no prior connection to Inga-Maria. This isn’t some hobby of mine where I flit from case to case. I write about no other case, no other person. I haven’t made a cent from my work on it, it’s a labour of love. But I wouldn’t have spent the past eighteen months writing the 45,000 words (so far) of this blog and travelling the country in pursuit of it if I didn’t feel with every ounce of my being that this passion, and this person, is of vital importance.

Regular readers of The Keeley Chronicles may notice that I try and distinguish every instalment with a different photo of Inga-Maria each time, and this part is a departure in that for the main cover image I’ve decided to reprise the most recognisable image of her, with I think good reason. For I feel that of all the parts of this blog, this is perhaps the most important yet, the one that maybe has the most potential of bringing about a breakthrough, maybe quietly behind the scenes. And so I want to make this part as recognisable as possible to give it the best chance possible of penetrating the areas it needs to reach. Despite the huge passage of time since 1988, a breakthrough in this case could still come at any time. It could come as a result of this blog, it could come as a result of one of John Dallat’s public appeals, or it could be triggered by something unrelated to either of us. Or it might not come at all. But there’s a saying, “Evil prospers when good men do nothing'”. I’m aware that all our efforts with this might be in vain. But I don’t care, I need to know I gave it everything.

And it’s not just me, everyone has a part to play in this. ‘People power’ is something very real, when enough people are united behind a common cause it can bring about extraordinary results. And it’s abundantly clear to me by now that there are many thousands of people across Northern Ireland and in particular County Antrim who have a fervent interest in seeing that this poor soul gets justice in this life, and a degree of mercy she wasn’t afforded in her lonely death. Every share on social media, every comment, every view of this blog, every new article that gets published are all like individual rivulets of water that if conducted simultaneously have the potential to amount to a tsunami. Next April will see the 30th anniversary of Inga-Maria’s murder. No inquest into her death has ever been held, and no one has ever been charged in relation to her murder. But those who are responsible are out there, in a cluster of villages so small you could walk through each of them in a matter of minutes.

This blog has a worldwide audience – from the analytics section on the site I can see that people in over 100 different countries around the world have read it. In particular it has a large following across Northern Ireland, and is widely read by thousands of people each month throughout County Antrim, many of whom share it via social media. It is those people I am again relying on to distribute this latest part to increase the chances it will be seen by the small group of people in the rural area to the east of Ballymoney who know who murdered Inga-Maria, and in particular the main protector of the killers. I’m begging that person to listen to this recording, listen to her extraordinary voice. Don’t let her song and her silent scream from beyond be in vain.

It will take two and a half minutes of your time.

Your pals took seventy years of hers.

 

 

 

 

Inga-Maria Hauser – Vocals & Acoustic Guitar

___________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2017

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 13

With thanks to the family of Inga-Maria Hauser

I would like to acknowledge the continued support of the Belfast Telegraph and the following social media groups:
Things We Would Like To See In Ballycastle
Moving Forward in Northern Ireland
Unsolved Murder Cold Cases in Ireland

‘Begging You’ written by Squire/Brown and published by Publishing Designee ©1994 Geffen Records. Inc. an MCA Company

Note: ‘Greensleeves’ was published before January 1, 1923, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago

The Keeley Chronicles PART 12

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 12 Contents
Chapter 34 - Writing to Reach You
Chapter 35 - Archives of Pain
Acknowledgements for Part 12

 

Chapter 34 – Writing to Reach You

Inga at a zoo sometime around 1981 or 1982 (with copyright notice)

And Then She Smiles: This newly-unearthed and previously-unpublished photo shows Inga-Maria at a zoo in the early 1980’s. Photo: Hauser family collection

 

We get older every year
But you don’t change…

I think about it every day
…and then I feel it

Teenage Fanclub – ‘Everything Flows’

 

Since posting Part 9 of The Keeley Chronicles in early April, there have been some unexpected developments behind the scenes that I count among the most meaningful since I began publishing this blog one year ago this week. One such development is that I was overjoyed and very moved to hear from Inga-Maria Hauser’s nephew – the first member of the extended Hauser family to get in touch with me, after I had spent many months trying to track down Inga-Maria’s mother in order to send her a parcel that included a letter I had written that I’d then typed and had gotten translated into German with the kind help of a friend who first came in contact with me through this blog.

Within just a few days of my first correspondence with Inga-Maria’s nephew, I was surprised again, in a development that was completely-unconnected to the Hauser family, when I was contacted by a man named Walter who had been a teenage friend of Inga-Maria’s in Munich. I was quickly able to establish he was telling the truth, and like I have done with Inga-Maria’s nephew, it has meant a lot to be able to build a bond of trust with him. As with Inga-Maria’s nephew, I have found him to be a lovely person.

Hearing from Inga-Maria’s friend expanded things into another dimension for me, as here was someone who had actually known her and could attest to her character, the very first person I had contact with who was in a position to do so. But I couldn’t have known what was next in store…For in a further momentous development I then heard from Inga-Maria’s sister, which meant so much to me, as she has never spoken to the press or been interviewed in the almost thirty years since Inga-Maria’s murder and continues to shun all media contact. Out of respect for her privacy, I do not think it would be appropriate to divulge her name or anything she has said to me but I am very grateful to her for having gotten in touch.

I cherish the recollections about Inga-Maria that Walter and her sister have shared with me and in the light of what happened to her in Northern Ireland all those years ago any such information is precious. In the course of our correspondence I have been able to find out things such as what was her favourite song which for me as a musician, songwriter and a massive music fan was one of the things I was most intrigued about. All the more so when I learned that her favourite song was ‘Mocking Bird’ by one of my own favourites Barclay James Harvest – a beautifully-orchestrated ballad with a melancholy, mournful air, a preference I think indicative of Inga-Maria’s thoughtful, artistic nature. Here it is:

 

 

With Walter’s permission I am about to reveal some more of what has been communicated to me, for I feel it is of benefit to Inga-Maria’s memory which has in the past been tarnished by some preposterous and deeply-disrespectful claims published by a Sunday tabloid some years ago that I believe to have had not a shred of foundation to them, and which I have purposely avoided even referring to in this blog to date because I deem them not worthy of my nor anyone else’s time. Some other information I’ve been privy to and which I’d like to share with you now, in his words, “Inga was for sure one of the most charming and beloved persons I’ve ever met.” These are the words of someone who actually knew her and not the words of someone with an agenda to try sell newspapers off the back of scurrilous and ludicrous male fantasies involving a young woman who has already had her life so cruelly taken and didn’t in any way deserve for her dignity to be trampled on and ravaged in such a callous manner that is sadly a typical case of character assassination from a tabloid newspaper but one which is all the more reprehensible given the horrific circumstances of Inga-Maria’s murder, the abominable mistreatment of her as a visitor to Irish shores and the inability of the authorities to bring charges against those responsible for the crimes inflicted on her for almost thirty years at the time of writing.

Furthermore Inga-Maria’s friend later went on to say, “To know her means to love her. Most of your writings regarding her character I can verify. As far as I knew her, she’d never have gone with someone unfamiliar to her without a very very good reason. This is one of the disturbing facts in the case – how the hell she could get into such a terrible plight? Inga was not that dumb adventurer, she would never have gone with any person – even less persons (!) – that dangerous.” He added, “The most remarkable attributes of Inga were…her personality. Everyone felt comfortable in her attendance. I can’t remember any bad word.

Inga-Maria’s dream was to travel – and in one of her last diary entries written in Scotland she wrote, “The day after tomorrow I’m going on to Ireland. I’m looking forward to that the best”. And then for her to be treated like that, almost immediately upon arrival? There are no words.

I’ll conclude this chapter with the following words from Inga-Maria’s friend: “I would be honoured if you give your attention to some things out of our conversation to your blog. I totally agree with you – and have the strong conviction – it will be very very important to describe Inga not only as a victim or a cold case, but rather as that person, she really was or maybe she could have been in future, in our present… Perhaps it will help convincing the one or the other of the offenders, the witnesses or protectors, what they have done and still do to a human being, a real person, a young girl with all her talents, her dreams, her plans of life – maybe they can catch a small glimpse of the consequences their disgraceful act had“.

 

Chapter 35 – Archives Of Pain

Inga 3

Almut Hauser pictured in 2009

 

You have your very own number
They dress your cage in its nature

For the outside
The small black flowers that grow in the sky

They drag sticks along your walls
Harvest your ovaries, dead mothers crawl

For the outside
The small black flowers that grow in the sky

Manic Street Preachers – ‘Small Black Flowers That Grow in the Sky’

 

Another person to have contacted me since the Spring in relation to Inga-Maria’s case is John Dallat. John is a man with a long and illustrious career in politics and who currently represents East Derry on behalf of the SDLP. He holds the notable distinction of having been the first-ever nationalist mayor of Coleraine and also spent nine years as Deputy Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly. Most importantly of all in my opinion, he is responsible for Inga-Maria’s case having been reopened after a direct approach to the then-RUC Chief Constable Sir Ronnie Flanagan.

I have written about John a number of times before. It is clear from numerous public statements he has published regarding Inga-Maria’s case over the years and from all my communication with him that the case has had a profound impact on him and he has I believe more than anyone strived to make a positive difference in honour of her memory. John travelled all the way from Derry to Dublin to meet with me, which is indicative of the lengths that he is willing to go to try help Inga-Maria’s case. I am proud to call John a friend and like the many fine people I have come in contact with through my work, the terribly sad thing is that it wasn’t any of these people who Inga-Maria encountered aboard the Galloway Princess on the April 6th 1988 instead of whoever was responsible for taking her life after “a vicious and ruthless assault” in the words of the PSNI.

Keeley with John Dallat MLA of the SDLP, Stormont Castle, Belfast, 26.3.18

Join Together: Keeley Moss & John Dallat MLA at the Northern Ireland Assembly, Stormont Castle, Belfast

 

Reinhard Keck conducted an interview with Inga-Maria’s mother Almut Hauser for the German newspaper Bild in 2011. Here are several extracts that I have translated into English for the first time:

Her white blouses are ironed, neatly laid in the closet. And her bed is also fresh; a colourful blanket embroidered with horses, which gallop into the expanse. Her favourite blanket. Inga Maria Hauser could come home any day, any hour. If she entered her room, she would feel as if she had never been away. The world out there has continued, but here, within 20 square meters, Inga Maria’s mother has left everything as it was 23 years ago. When Inga Maria died.

Carefully we can enter it. It is a small room with a light parquet, in which the memories accumulated: on the desk, notebooks; Pins and brushes are arranged neatly. On the bedside table next to the bed, a golden hairpin and a silver necklace shine, on the windowsill are figures made of clay. For Almut Hauser sacred artefacts, all carefully selected and carefully arranged.

“Inga Maria’s things will always be with me,” says Almut Hauser with a firm voice. “I have not thrown anything away, I wanted to have everything around me to keep the memory alive.” Then she strokes the colourful horse’s corner: “They are also the things that belong to Inga”.

“It was her great dream to travel with her backpack through the UK during school holidays,” says her mother.

Would she have let her daughter go? Almut Hauser often thinks about this question. And perhaps it is so difficult for her to let her youngest go a second time. Just let go and not know her anymore, as soon as her room no longer exists.

Ten years ago it would have been possible to dissolve the room. Almut Hauser did not. She retired at that time and had to look for a new apartment. She did not need much space, there was only one extra room – for Inga Maria. “First I packed my things, then the ones from Inga,” says Almut Hauser, “in the new apartment I have automatically rebuilt everything as it was before.”

 

Can you imagine living like that every day, year after year after year? Imagine the impact all this would have on your marriage, and on the relationship you have with your other daughter. Imagine the impact it would have on your social life, on your health, on your work. That level of unsurpassable agony, the torment of those memories. Trying desperately to keep the worst thoughts as far away and the best ones as close as possible but all the time knowing that as both are inextricably linked, even the happy recollections are soaked in sadness. And the realisation that the rest of your life will be spent in this prison of pain while the very individuals responsible for causing that pain have never had to spend one minute inside any prison to atone for what they did. Maimed by the memory of losing your baby and being aware of what their last hour on this Earth must have been like, filled with the worst experiences it is possible for a young woman to be put through. Assaulted by the thought that you weren’t there to protect her, and faced every day with the feeling that you somehow failed her, that she spent the last moments of her young life being terrorised and brutalized in the most remote section of a pitch-black forest a thousand miles from home. Hounded by the horror of the utter terror she must have experienced during that ordeal.

Sometimes I don’t know how much longer I can carry on being immersed in this case and writing this blog with the extent of human suffering shadowing my steps, each grim detail swirling around inside my head without end. During the sixteen months so far that I’ve been writing, researching and promoting this blog I’ve gone to some dark places psychologically. I’ve cried many times about what happened to her, her looking forward most of all to visiting Ireland as she stated in one of her last diary entries and knowing what the reality entailed, her family having to live the rest of their lives without her and imagining the silence and the sadness echoing endlessly, her parents having to hold what would have been her 21st birthday party in her absence and them inviting all her friends to their home that day, her body having been discovered on of all days her mother’s birthday, Inga’s dad having to leave this life without ever knowing what really happened and without ever seeing justice…But I feel I have to try carry this on for as long as it is possible to do so. I can’t let it go. And neither can John Dallat.

And neither can Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray and the PSNI who it should be acknowledged have devoted years of work to trying to solve this case. I know there are people out there who bear a grievance towards the PSNI and certainly their former incarnation the RUC and would be loath to give them credit. However anyone who has really taken the time to delve into the extensive history of this case would surely have to acknowledge that back in 1988 and equally so from the early 2000’s until 2012 they committed significant resources and a huge volume of man-hours into trying to solve the case. If the PSNI didn’t care, or if there was a cover-up as some have suggested then it makes no sense why they would have taken it upon themselves to spend time and considerable effort in developing a full DNA profile of the ‘crime scene donor’ from the crime scene materials 17 years after the murder and then assembling a team of detectives to work full-time on the case from 2005 when they obtained the full DNA profile until 2012 when they hit a brick wall in the investigation. Not long after Part 1 of The Keeley Chronicles was first published I was contacted by a retired RUC detective who was among the first at the scene of Inga-Maria’s murder. In his words “This was the one case in my career I would have given my eye teeth to solve”. I believe that sentiment would have been broadly shared by his counterparts in the police force and by many of the subsequent police officers and detectives some of whom have worked long hours on the case for years at a time.

Every time I work on a new instalment of this blog I always try to do something different and present something new for you, either in terms of writing about the case from a different angle, or by featuring a new interview or song I have recorded or by including an otherwise-unavailable news clip about the case, or by publishing a new photograph of Inga-Maria whenever possible. Well this part, fittingly published one year on from the week when The Keeley Chronicles first emerged and went viral, is significant for the inclusion of the previously unpublished details about Inga-Maria that I mentioned in the first paragraph and even more so for another newly-unearthed photo of Inga-Maria at the top of the page. It shows this beautiful girl as she was on a long-ago day in the early 1980’s during an outing to a zoo, which given that Inga-Maria was born in 1969 I would estimate was taken around 1981 or 1982. In the photo she’s laughing, happy and so full of life…The very life that only a few short years later would be stolen from her forever.

I urge those in the rural area to the east of Ballymoney who are shielding those responsible for her horrific murder to simply take a look at the photograph at the top of this page and try telling yourself that the girl in that photo doesn’t deserve justice or that she could possibly be able to rest in peace without it.

Just try telling yourself that.

____________________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2017

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 12

Thanks to Walter and John Dallat MLA. There is a light that never goes out.

I would like to acknowledge the continued support of the following social media groups:

Things We Would Like To See In Ballycastle

Moving Forward in Northern Ireland

Unsolved Murder Cold Cases In Ireland

‘Everything Flows’ written by Blake/O’Hare/Love/McGinley. Published by Universal Music Publishing Group ©1990

‘Small Black Flowers That Grow in the Sky’ written by Bradfield/Wire/Moore/James. Published by Sony Music Publishing ©1996

The Keeley Chronicles PART 11

The definitive account of the only case of its kind in Northern Ireland, our ongoing campaign for justice and a tribute to the victim of a tragedy still unsolved after thirty years

187. June 28th

By Keeley Moss

 

Part 11 Contents
Chapter 32 - Belfast Child
Chapter 33 - The Eternal
Acknowledgements for Part 11

 

Chapter 32 – Belfast Child

ing1 (with copyright notice)

Your Silent Face: A rare photo of Inga-Maria taken in 1986. Hauser family collection

 

He only loves those things because he loves to see them break
But some day you will ache like I ache

Some day you will ache like I ache

Hole – ‘Doll Parts’

 

Making my way from my home to Dublin Connolly I caught the Enterprise to Belfast (amusingly nicknamed “The Starship Enterprise” as I discovered recently), a train journey as long as it is expensive. €55 for a return train ticket would put a fair old dent in the Keeley coffers but needs must, and so off I went, boarding the high-speed train with my trusty electric-blue laptop, a cumbersome device with an increasingly-ravaged battery but one that is making a fine fist of valiantly refusing to give up the fight against the thorny forces of wear, tear and time.

WP_004368

Come In Alone: The first photo I took upon stepping onto the platform at Belfast Central station. Photo: Keeley Moss ©2017

 

On the way the train passed through Drogheda, Dundalk and Portadown. After two and a quarter hours I arrived in Belfast – where Inga-Maria would’ve arrived on had she managed to catch the train from Larne Harbour on the night she had her life taken from her – and I wondered what awaited me here. One thing I hadn’t expected being struck by however were immediate pangs of guilt upon stepping off the train. Here I was arriving in the city Inga-Maria had been in the process of trying to reach on the night she was so badly abused and her life was taken, and where she hadn’t made it, I had. Where she wasn’t allowed to arrive unhindered, uninterrupted, I was. So my immediate feeling upon arrival in Belfast was an overriding one of guilt. Why was it so easy for me and impossible for her? Why was I able to make it and she wasn’t? It might seem like a straightforward and mundane event, merely stepping off a train in Belfast but on April 6th 1988 it had been beyond her, this bright beacon of youthful exuberance who arrived in the province unknown and remarkably given subsequent events, totally-unnoticed. Unnoticed of course, except for the individual who it is believed spotted her and sought her out on the ferry and who drove her from Larne to the horrendous ordeal that culminated in her savage murder.

This is something that I think is so easy to overlook, that we’re talking about a real person here, not some abstract concept or some mythical figure. Flesh and blood, heart and soul. A daughter. A sister. A friend. A classmate. Someone with hopes and dreams just like the rest of us. Someone who presumably expected to be able to arrive in a new country and get to explore the culture and the folklore for a day or two, and who never could have expected in her worst nightmares that how she would actually be received upon her arrival was to be beaten around the face and head, have her neck broken, end up murdered and her broken body left like an animal carcass in that forest. I’m sorry to be so graphic and I genuinely have tried not to be throughout the course of my writing, wary as I am of sounding in any way sensationalist and because I myself find it harrowing. But sometimes in life it’s necessary to tell it like it is and strip away the veneer, the screen and the sheen. Central to the need to speak so directly is a simmering sense of indignation. From one soul looking out for another it rankles with me that what happened to her could have been allowed to be overlooked and/or forgotten for years at a time, and that the perpetrators have never had to spend even one minute atoning for erasing her from the world and plunging her family into a permanent pit of pain.

 

Chapter 33 – The Eternal

BELFAST TELEGRAPH: One of NI’s most shocking murders…and the singer who believes she can help solve a case that has baffled police for 29 years

BELFAST TELEGRAPH – Editorial: Singer Keeley helping keep Inga Maria case in spotlight

My work on Inga-Maria’s campaign was recently the subject of newspaper coverage in the Belfast Telegraph. This was the first official print media coverage in Northern Ireland for The Keeley Chronicles and for my work on the case overall. The Belfast Telegraph are notable for in addition to being I believe the most widely-circulated newspaper in the North, are also the newspaper who have consistently held a candle for Inga-Maria’s unsolved case over the years, and have broken more exclusives in relation to it than any other media outlet. I am very grateful to them, the author of the piece Claire McNeilly and their editor for the tact, sensitivity and support they have shown me and Inga-Maria’s memory in having conducted themselves in an exemplary manner throughout. I’m also indebted to Roisin Boyd for her involvement in facillitating the interview in the first place. I have included links to the two articles directly above.

I’m also grateful to Hot Press magazine, their editorial writer Peter McGoran and commisioning editor Roisin Dwyer. Hot Press is Ireland’s leading music, entertainment and current affairs magazine who interviewed me recently in Dublin for an article in which I was supposed to promote my band but which I instead predominantly used to discuss Inga-Maria’s life and the case. There was a lot more that I said in the interview about Inga-Maria and also about music than what ended up in the article (the interview lasted 90 minutes, only a relatively-small portion of which could be condensed into the article) but nonetheless it’s yet more significant coverage for Inga-Maria’s unsolved case and is I believe the first time news of her case has entered the realm of music media. I shall attach the link here for anyone who would like to read the interview.

HOT PRESS – One Hell of a Session. Session Motts’ lead singer Keeley Moss talks unsolved murders, the haunting past, and her passion for music

Although no one has ever communicated this to me it has crossed my mind that perhaps some people who have read this blog at some point have thought, “What has it got to do with her?” or “Why single out this one case from all the other tragic cases out there?” but if that has ever been the case, you know what? All it really has to do with me is that I’m a human being and she was a human being, end of. The fact that I’m Irish and from the South and that this happened in the North and that Inga-Maria wasn’t from either the North or South of Ireland is to my mind irrelevant. When I decided to work exclusively on her case it was with I felt good reason as I think I have more chance of doing something positive and hopefully-helpful if I give one unsolved case everything I’ve got rather than flit from case to case and have less of a chance of achieving something meaningful. Her interrupted journey through life has somehow many years later become part of my ongoing journey through life. In doing so I feel I am symbolically defying her destruction with my creation. The killers of Inga-Maria Hauser were able to freely murder her and get away with it for 29 years and possibly forever – they “achieved” that much. But I’m determined that that’s all they’re going to get. Because there’s a bigger picture I’m painting with all this. And that is to establish something that they won’t achieve. I am determined they won’t erase the legacy I think she unwittingly left behind on April 6th 1988, and which is at the absolute core of everything I’m trying to promote through this blog and through all the songs of my band that she is the beating heart of. The legacy that I’ve been trying to gradually grow for her in the course of all of my work on her case, a legacy that John Dallat MLA and the many good people of North Antrim are in support of. Inga-Maria Hauser didn’t even spend one day in Northern Ireland before she was murdered, not even one night. She was legally an adult for a little more than ten months when she died. But I would like to see to it that she effectively lives forever. That her memory far outlives those of her killers. And that the essence of her youth, her beauty, her adventurousness, her creativity can find a way to live on, in this blog, in the songs I’m involved in writing, in the music videos for those songs I’m involved in making with my band, in any and every way possible. She was murdered within hours or even minutes of arriving here. No one – no one (other than her killers) even knew she’d arrived in the country. She was spotted during the ferry crossing by a mere two people, both of whom were travelling together. The killers of Inga-Maria Hauser took it upon themselves to unilaterally alter the life-course of another human being and in doing so destroyed an 18 year-old girl who was just making her way through the world. But she’s going to live forever.

Forever

And that can maybe be her revenge of sorts from beyond the grave. The posthumous response of a knowing soul. The most dignified response possible. And as gentle and subtle as it might sound, a most powerful one too. As the saying goes, “Less force, more power”. We all only have a limited timespan on this Earth. But as the great Tony Wilson, the founder of Factory Records who gave the world Joy Division, New Order and the Happy Mondays said not long before his own death, “Great songs never die”. And I’m going to try see to it that the best songs I’m involved in writing are the ones inspired by her.

In recent months I have been privileged to have had correspondance with Inga-Maria’s family and one of her friends. They were kindly willing to share some recollections of her, and from that it is abundantly-clear to me that as well as being beautiful she was a beautiful person also. And she looked cool. Really cool, in an understated and very natural way. Take a look at the most commonly circulated photo of her, the one at the very beginning of Part 1 of this blog, an enlarged version which I’ve reprised below for the sake of comparison. The wind is blowing, she’s squinting due to the wind or the light at the time, she has no make-up on and is in the middle of searching in her bag for something. She looks as if caught unawares, certainly unprepared for the taking of a photo, not in ‘pose’ mode at all. And even so, even with everything against her, she still looks cool, effortlessly so. And what’s more, in 1988. In retrospect very few people looked cool in 1988. Off the top of my head I can only think of a handful of people (Emmanuelle Seigner, Johnny Marr and New Order). Looking back, the 1980’s was such a lovably-laughable decade where almost everyone – even the cool people – managed to look uncool a lot of the time. But not her. While most people were walking around in shellsuits, jumpsuits and massive shoulder pads, with permed hair and lashings of ozone-layer-decimating hairspray, cliched looks that have generally aged really badly, she – growing up in a quiet Munich suburb and unknown to everyone in the world except her friends and family – I think transcended her times and their accompanying fashion crimes.

I would love to have known what she would have gone on to do with her life. But I’ll never have the chance. Because she never had the chance. Because those who likely encountered her onboard the ferry apparently decided to deceive her into believing they were going to give her a lift to Belfast and instead took her in the opposite direction to where they inflicted on her one of the worst ordeals a human being can be put through, before ending her life in such a bewilderingly-vicious way. The permanent theft of that existence, the decades-long denial of her life, and the nagging angst I feel about that heartless larceny is largely what propels me to promote her short-lived presence on the Earth. I suspect that like most of us she would have liked to be thought of and be remembered.

 

And now, finish
I sail on the next tide

Tonight, Belfast, I’m saying my goodbyes
Tonight, Belfast, the distance in your eyes

Neon Neon – ‘Belfast’

 

____________________________________________________________________

Inga-Maria Hauser cropped-inga-classic-pic-better-quality
Born May 28th 1969. Died April 6th 1988. Found April 20th 1988. Never forgotten.

© Keeley Moss 2018

All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced in any form without the permission in writing from the copyright owner.

————————————————————————–

Acknowledgements for Part 11

With thanks to Roisin Boyd, Claire McNeilly, the Belfast Telegraph, Peter McGoran, Roisin Dwyer and Hot Press magazine.

‘Doll Parts’ written by Love/Erlandson. Published by Geffen Music Publishing ©1994

‘Belfast’ written by Hollon/Rhys. Published by Warp Music/Copyright Control ©2008