Updated: 20/10/17 : 05:58:30
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Sligo vigil in Memory of Savita Halappanavar

October 28th will mark the 5th anniversary of the death of Savita Halappanavar in Galway. Vigils will take place nationally, in conjunction with Galway Pro Choice who have the support of Savita’s family and friends in holding the commemorative event.

Members of the Abortion Rights Campaign and the Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment have organised the vigil in Sligo, where members of the public are welcome to attend and pay their respects.

The event will be held on Quay St., Sligo, on her anniversary to mark the unnecessary passing of a woman whose tragic death humbled our nation.

Savita was born in Bagalkot, India, the youngest of three children. Savita arrived in Galway in July 2008 to live with her husband, Praveen, who was already living and working there. She was a very friendly person and became an active member of the Galway community.

The couple took part in dance competitions and organised events for the Indian community in the city. She taught Indian dance to children in her community and had them dancing in events for the Special Olympics as well as in the St Patrick’s Day parade in 2011.

Savita passed her Irish Dental Council exams in July 2012 and was granted a license to practice as a dentist in Ireland. As she was pregnant with her first baby, due March 30th 2013, she decided she would not begin dental practice until after her confinement.


Savita was 17 weeks pregnant with her first child, a girl, when she died. She was admitted to Galway University Hospital a week earlier with severe back pain. Her requests for a termination were refused 3 times, despite the impression she was miscarrying, because a foetal heartbeat was still present.

She went into septic shock after spontaneously delivering a female foetus three days after her admission. She died in intensive care on October 28th 2012 in Galway University Hospital. She was 31 years old.

Members of the public are invited to assemble at 4pm on Quay St., Sligo where there will be readings, music and a moment of silence. Members of the public are invited to bring flowers and candles, although this is not necessary to attend.

The organisers ask that the community remain quiet and respectful during the vigil, as the purpose of this event is to remember the life of Savita Halappanavar and pay our respects to her family and friends. It is hoped that the family and friends of Savita will find solace in the support of the Irish people, and the knowledge that the nation is moving towards a position where a tragedy like this can never happen again.

Diary Date:
Day: Saturday
Date: 28 October
Time: 4pm