Jo Berry

Psychologies|January 2020

Jo Berry
Jo Berry’s father, politician Anthony Berry, was killed by the IRA in the Brighton hotel bombing in 1984. Now a peace activist and public speaker, Jo has met and formed a friendship with bomber Patrick Magee
Danielle Woodward

My life changed overnight when my father was killed.

I couldn’t get back the person I was before and I couldn’t move on. I didn’t know what to do with my emotions. I suppressed a lot in order to cope but I couldn’t get away from feeling that I now lived in that conflict. I wanted to do something but I didn’t know what. It was the peace process that provided a turning point and I decided to make contact with Patrick.

We are taught to not be vulnerable, but sometimes being brave means showing our vulnerability.

I knew Patrick was on the side of the oppressed and may justify what happened, so I thought we would meet only once. He said he was completely thrown by the empathy I showed him, and I knew another journey had started.

I’m a believer in restorative justice – I want people to hear the impact of their actions, as it might inspire them to change.

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January 2020