The village of Burncourt, County Tipperary lies in the valley between the Galtee and Knockmealdown mountains. Known as Rehill until the mid 17th century - and Rehill still survives as the name of one of the local townlands - Burncourt derived its name from the imposing ruins of the castle adjacent to the village, burned in 1650 as Cromwell's army laid waste to our country. (Not every Republican development can be viewed positively in Ireland, particularly when the English Republican leader Oliver Cromwell set about his mass murder of "the mere Irish"!)

"The Galtee Mountain Boy" is a popular song of the Irish War of Independence and Civil War, and was composed by Patsy Halloran. It was recorded by Christy Moore, who is best known to all those with a particular interest in the history of the Spanish Anti-Fascist War for his song paying tribute to 15th International Brigade's Irish volunteers, "Viva La Quince Brigada". When Christy recorded "The Galtee Mountain Boy" he also added a fourth verse. A further five verses have now been added by Manus O'Riordan to mark the unveiling of the Kit Conway memorial, and the song was sung by him at the unveiling ceremony itself.

I joined the Flying Column in 19 and 19,
In Cork with Sean Moylan, in Tipperary with Dan Breen.
Arrested by Free Staters and sentenced for to die.
Farewell to Tipperary, said the Galtee mountain boy.
We went across the valleys and over the hilltops green,
Where we met with Dinny Lacey, Sean Hogan and Dan Breen,
Sean Moylan and his gallant men that kept the flag flying high.
Farewell to Tipperary, said the Galtee mountain boy.
We tracked the Dublin mountains, we were rebels on the run.
Though hunted night and morning, we were outlaws but free men.
We tracked the Wicklow mountains as the sun was shining high.
Farewell to Tipperary, said the Galtee mountain boy.
I bid farewell to old Clonmel that I never more will see,
And to the Galtee mountains that oft times sheltered me.
The men who fought for liberty and who died without a sigh,
May their cause be ne'er forgotten, said the Galtee mountain boy.
So gathered here, let's raise a cheer for Burncourt's native sons,
Jack Ryan and Michael Guerin, defending with their guns
The Republic and Dail Eireann, the Irish people's choice.
First in the fray brave Kit Conway, with John Kearney and the Boys.
At Ballyporeen Kit's courage was seen on that Flying Column raid.
Of no RIC, nor Auxies, nor Tans was he afraid.
"A leader bold, in Tom Barry's mould!", his commander would exclaim.
For freedom's light to the death he would fight on a war-scorched hill in Spain.
'36 the year, defying fear, saw the Spanish people vote
A Republic for the Rights of Man! But Franco would revolt.
Gernika ablaze from Hitler's planes, the Republic overthrown,
Despite the brave 15th Brigade, Kit Conway to the fore.
Outside Madrid 10,000 killed in Jarama's vale of tears.
In that war's hell Kit Conway fell that Spain might yet be free.
And with freedom Spain a gravestone raised, thanks gave in '94,
Where thousands lay with Kit Conway, far away from Galteemore.
In the year '05, Kit's name to inscribe, 'twas to Burncourt that we came,
Tipperary's fighting story to honour and proclaim!
With his comrades from the War in Spain, Mick O'Riordan and Bob Doyle,
A plaque unveiled, Kit Conway praised, here's to freedom's Galtee Boys!
Manus O'Riordan