John Weir
Royal Ulster Constabulary officer
John Weir
John Oliver Weir, is an Ulster loyalist born in the Republic of Ireland. He served as an officer in Northern Ireland's Royal Ulster Constabulary's (RUC) Special Patrol Group (SPG) (an anti-terrorist unit), and was a volunteer in the illegal Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF).
Biography
John Weir's personal information overview.
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Business takeovers: Mad merger men
The Economist - about 3 years
A Giant Cow-Tipping by Savages: The Boom, Bust and Boom Culture of M&A. By John Weir Close. Palgrave Macmillan; 320 pages; $28 and £17.99. Buy from Amazon.com, Amazon.co.ukCORPORATE takeovers are often the morality plays of finance. Giant egos clash in epic displays of greed and fear. Houses in the Hamptons and chateaux in Provence are acquired with the fees generated for all the investment bankers, lawyers and public-relations folk involved. The press loves the drama. And the poor workers watch helplessly as their fate hangs in the balance.Sometimes it seems as if no one knows what they are doing. Bob Campeau, a Canadian property developer, acquired a series of stores (including Bloomingdale’s and Brooks Brothers) from the Allied and Federated groups in the late 1980s, with the help of a lot of debt. But few believed that Mr Campeau had a master plan for reviving these retailers; he was simply able to get the money. “Selling the company for a price that will bankrupt the buyer and ...
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The Economist article
Expelled Partner Ordered to Pay Holland $182,000
Law - over 4 years
Coupled with a 9 percent interest, the total award against John Weir is expected to be above $300,000, said Renee Phillips, the firm's attorney and an associate at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe.
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Law article
The Emigration Group Win 2011 Down Under Award for "Best Customer Service" - Emigration Group
Google News - over 5 years
Director of the Down Under Awards, John Weir, is delighted that the awards have proved so popular among readers with such a large turnout throughout the voting process. “They voted in their droves; demonstrating the enduring appeal of Australia and New
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Google News article
Apple Daze salutes Donnellson Post Office and Pilot Grove Savings Bank - Keokuk Gate City Daily
Google News - over 5 years
Postmasters through the years have been William Donnell, (1871-1876); Herman Eymann, (1876); John Weir, (1876-1881); William Davis, (1881-1883); George Mattern, (1883); Herman Eymann, (1883-1886); Adam Wiegner, (1886-1889); Lewis Walter, (1889-1893);
Article Link:
Google News article
NREM set to participate at Oklahoma Wildlife Expo - Bixby Bulletin
Google News - over 5 years
“We believe that NREM (department of natural resource ecology and management) and OSU involvement is very important at the Expo,” said John Weir, NREM research associate. “We're able to interact with a lot of people that we normally would not get to
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Google News article
After Injury, a Job Can Be Vital Medicine - TheTyee.ca
Google News - over 5 years
John Weir of IAM Cares fears the new program means the end for many of the smaller service providers -- but the threat to his organization and others like it isn't his only issue. "Part of the concern that everybody has is the gag order that they put
Article Link:
Google News article
Cameraman assault charge downgraded - Daily Advertiser
Google News - over 5 years
Cochrane's barrister, John Weir, described Cochrane's actions as a deflection and a push away. Mr Weir asked for the common assault charge to be proven but dismissed under Section 10(1)(a) of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act, arguing his client
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Google News article
Museum's rail history project receives grant funding - EMC Smiths Falls
Google News - over 5 years
Nominations must be received at the museum in person or by mail no later than 12 pm (noon) on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011. For more information call John Weir, President or Anne Shropshire, Curator. 613-283-5696 or info@rmeo.org. Applicants must be 18 years
Article Link:
Google News article
Tributes pour in for Jack Layton - CanadaEast.com
Google News - over 5 years
He visited Saint John in 2000 to explore some of the initiatives that the city of Toronto had taken to address substandard and dilapidated housing, a perennial problem in Saint John, Weir's home base. Once a Toronto city councillor, Layton held a
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Google News article
Second annual Rail Fest makes a stop here Aug. 27-28 - EMC Smiths Falls
Google News - over 5 years
A second demonstration will be led by volunteers John Weir and Dave McCurdy who will go back in time to their years of working side-by-side in the caboose. They will be demonstrating the work that goes into preparing a caboose for use,
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Google News article
John Martin boosted by £1.3m sale of showrooms - Scotsman
Google News - over 5 years
Last week, Grangemouth-based John Weir - which specialises in Mercedes-Benz - reported profits had accelerated to £424000 from £134000 in the year to 31 October on the back of a 9.8 per cent rise in sales to £91.5m
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Google News article
Spill at Merrimack Valley Oil - Patch.com
Google News - over 5 years
"They had a pump issue, a malfunction," Fire Lt. John Weir said. "It leaked about 300 gallons of number 2 fuel oil." A system was in place consisting of valves and channels that allowed the company to contain and clean up some of the spill
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Google News article
John R Weir profits in the fast lane - Scotsman
Google News - over 5 years
Staff numbers dipped to 341 from 346, with the payroll bill dropping to £8.15m from £8.16m after "non-productive personnel costs" were removed. The family-owned company, founded by John Weir in 1992, has bases in Aberdeen, Dundee, Inverness and Perth
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Google News article
MAHARAJA'S COLLEGE REMEMBERS PROF. JOHN WEIR - Star of Mysore
Google News - over 5 years
John Weir on his 100th death anniversary at a programme organised at the College premises here yesterday. Prof. John Weir had served as Principal of the College for 20 years from 1890 to 1910 and passed away on July 31, 1911
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Google News article
FASHION REVIEW; Milan, Why So Gloomy?
NYTimes - about 8 years
DARK times call for dark coats. That was the impression the Milan designers gave after four days of runway shows in which the particularities of individual labels got lost in a continuous loop of gloom. What with all the economic Cassandras making prophecies that the retail sector will be a disaster well into the third quarter, designers reacted by
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NYTimes article
THREATS AND RESPONSES: THE OVERVIEW; Terror Plot Foiled; Airports Quickly Clamp Down
NYTimes - over 10 years
The British authorities said Thursday that they had thwarted an advanced terrorist plot to blow up airplanes flying from Britain to the United States using liquid explosives that would have escaped airport security. The officials said they had arrested 24 men, all British-born Muslims, who planned to carry the liquids in drink bottles and combine
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NYTimes article
NEIGHBORHOOD REPORT: READING NEW YORK; The Restaurant Curse of 63rd Street and the City Through a Lens
NYTimes - almost 11 years
MARLA MAPLES applied the fundamentals of feng shui to Peaches, the Manhattan restaurant she opened in 1998. But as Eric Asimov wrote in The New York Times, the place had a ''lifespan of a piece of ripe fruit.'' In his new book, ''A Writer's Life'' (Knopf, $26), Gay Talese reveals that not even feng shui could overcome the curse on restaurants at
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NYTimes article
2006 OLYMPIC WINTER GAMES -- FIGURE SKATING: MEN; A Little Nervousness Shows Through Weir's Brash Exterior
NYTimes - about 11 years
At these Olympic Games, Johnny Weir, the uncensored figure skater, has called himself ''princessy'' and has compared his room in the athletes' village to camping in the woods. In the past, he has described his costume as a ''Care Bear on acid'' and has called a competitor's program a ''shot-of-vodka-and-a-snort-of-coke kind of thing,'' eliciting
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NYTimes article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of John Weir
    FIFTIES
  • 2006
    Age 56
    The following statements by Weir appeared in the Irish current affairs magazine Politico in 2006: "I'm lucky to be above the ground.
    More Details Hide Details My family has suffered. There is no sense in my saying that I feel sorry for what I have done. But I do believe that it is important that each side looks at the other's point of view. A long-lasting peace will depend on one side showing that they know the other side has also been wronged".
    The panel published in their 2006 report that RUC ballistics evidence concerning the firearms used in the attacks corroborated Weir's allegations.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 2003
    Age 53
    Weir's affidavit which implicated Jackson, other members of the Glenanne gang, soldiers of the Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR), and his colleagues in the RUC and SPG, in a series of sectarian attacks, including the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, was published in the 2003 Barron Report, the findings of an official investigation into the 1974 car bombings commissioned by Irish Supreme Court Justice Henry Barron.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 2000
    Age 50
    In an interview with the RUC on 9 August 2000, James Mitchell staunchly denied Weir's allegations about him, and referred to Weir as a "damned liar and convicted murderer".
    More Details Hide Details Alleged Dublin bomber Davy Payne was also questioned about Weir's allegations and he also denied them, as did Stewart Young when asked about his purported role in the Monaghan bombing,
  • FORTIES
  • 1999
    Age 49
    Weir has spoken to and communicated with several journalists including Sean McPhilemy, Liam Clarke, and Joe Tiernan. He was also interviewed by RTÉ in June 1999.
    More Details Hide Details In 1994 he moved to Nigeria after he had been warned that his life was in danger from his former colleagues in the security forces and republicans. Weir has never married. According to journalist Kevin Dowling of the Sunday Mirror, Weir, who holds an Irish passport, was later deported from Nigeria.
    The Garda Síochána, who had interviewed him in April 1999, found him to have been "an impressive witness" and they "believed his allegations should be taken seriously".
    More Details Hide Details In 2004, the human rights group, the Pat Finucane Centre, asked Professor Douglass Cassel (formerly of Northwestern University School of Law) to convene an international panel of inquiry to investigate allegations of collusion in Northern Ireland by the security forces and loyalist paramilitaries in a series of sectarian attacks committed in the 1970s against nationalists. This panel also found Weir's evidence to have been credible and agreed with the Garda Síochána and the Barron Inquiry that his allegations "must be regarded with the utmost seriousness".
    In January 1999, to assist journalist Sean McPhilemy who was being sued for libel, Weir made a affidavit containing 62 paragraphs in which he outlined in detail the instances of collusion between his RUC and SPG colleagues, members of the UDR, and loyalist paramilitaries such as Robin Jackson.
    More Details Hide Details He implicated them in a series of sectarian killings and bombings carried out by the Glenanne gang. The role of Jackson, who had died in 1998 of cancer, featured largely in Weir's statement. Jackson was named, along with Mid-Ulster UVF brigadier Billy Hanna (the main organiser) and North Belfast UDA brigadier Davy Payne, as having led one of the UVF teams that attacked Dublin on 17 May 1974 in three separate, no-warning car bombings which left 26 people dead and almost 300 people injured, mostly women. Weir had received the information regarding the 1974 car bombings and the perpetrators from his associates in the Glenanne gang. Fellow SPG officer and Glenanne gang member Laurence McClure had personally recounted to Weir each sectarian attack carried out by the gang; he also confirmed that the Mid-Ulster UVF unit led by Hanna and Jackson had exploded the car bombs in Dublin's city centre. Stewart Young, a prominent member of the Portadown UVF, told Weir he had headed the team that planted the Monaghan car bomb which had killed an additional seven people 90 minutes after the Dublin blasts. Hanna had also masterminded this attack, although he had allowed Young to lead the bombing unit, while he had gone to Dublin with his own team. Weir stated that UDR intelligence officer Captain John Irwin had supplied the explosives, and James Mitchell's farm had been used for the construction and storage of the bombs.
  • 1993
    Age 43
    Although he was sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of William Strathern, he was released on license on 1 February 1993.
    More Details Hide Details The SPG unit was stood down in 1980.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1980
    Age 30
    Weir pleaded not guilty but was convicted in June 1980 on the basis of admissions he had made during police interrogation.
    More Details Hide Details He attempted to repudiate the confessions, alleging that he had been mistreated by the RUC officers in Castlereagh holding cells whilst also claiming that the confinement of his cell made him feel like he was "cracking up". However, Weir's attempts to have the confessions thrown out were not a success.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1979
    Age 29
    Weir had been arrested at work in Magherafelt shortly before Christmas 1979 for his part in the murder and subsequently confessed his involvement at Castlereagh Holding Centre following interrogation.
    More Details Hide Details However, during these interviews Weir also claimed that he had arranged the killing only because he had been ordered to by superiors officers from RUC Special Branch. He suggested that the actual gunman Jackson was "untouchable because he was a Special Branch agent". Weir had made an offer to testify against Jackson and Kerr but only on the condition that the murder charge against him was withdrawn. This offer was refused by the Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions who said "Kerr and Jackson have not been interviewed by the police because the police state they are virtually immune to interrogation and the common police consensus is that to arrest and interview either man is a waste of time. Both men are known to police to be very active and notorious UVF murderers. Nevertheless the police do not recommend consideration of withdrawal of charges against Weir. I agree with this view. Weir and McCaughey must be proceeded against. When proceedings against them are terminated the position may be reviewed in respect of Jackson and Kerr".
  • 1977
    Age 27
    Catholic chemist William Strathern was killed at his home at 2:00 on 19 April 1977.
    More Details Hide Details Almost three years later, Weir and Constable William McCaughey were arrested for their part in the killing and tried before a Diplock court. The story that emerged at the trial was that Weir and McCaughey had decided Strathern should be killed as they erroneously believed him to be a member of the Provisional IRA. To carry the killing out, they recruited two other loyalists and drove them to Strathern's home village of Ahoghill where they knocked on the door of his house, which was also the village's main shop and chemist, and asked him to open up as they urgently needed medicine for a sick child. When Strathern opened the door he was immediately shot dead and the four escaped in Weir's RUC car. It was claimed that the two had been drinking heavily in a pub in Armagh when McCaughey suggested they should carry out a killing as a reprisal for the killings of Constables Hugh McConnell and William Turbitt by the Provisional IRA South Armagh Brigade. Weir was initially reluctant to get involved but was soon convinced and acquired what was described as a "clean Colt. 45" to carry out the shooting with. It was also stated during the trial that the two gunmen had been Robin Jackson and his associate Robert John Kerr, while Weir had maintained he and McCaughey had stayed in the car during the killing.
    Weir identified Jackson as the gunman in many shootings, including the John Francis Green, O'Dowd, and William Strathern killings. Shortly before the killing of Catholic RUC sergeant Jim Campbell in February 1977, Weir was at Jackson's home when he had been invited to accompany Jackson on a mission to kill a Catholic RUC officer which Jackson claimed had been arranged by Billy McCaughey and a Special Branch officer.
    More Details Hide Details
    Along with his RUC colleague Billy McCaughey, Weir was convicted of the 1977 sectarian killing of Catholic chemist William Strathern and sentenced to life imprisonment.
    More Details Hide Details
  • 1976
    Age 26
    On 11 October 1976 he was promoted to the rank of sergeant and was again transferred, this time to Newry RUC station.
    More Details Hide Details
    On 1 September 1976 he was transferred to Omagh where he spent six weeks at Lisanelly British Army base.
    More Details Hide Details
    Sometime shortly after his promotion to the rank of sergeant and his subsequent transfer to Newry RUC station in October 1976, Weir, Jackson and another RUC officer, Gary Armstrong went on a reconnaissance in South Armagh seeking out the homes of known IRA men, with the intention of assassinating them.
    More Details Hide Details Jackson carried a knife and hammer; he boasted to Weir, that if they happened to "find a suitable person to kill, he Jackson knew how to do it with those weapons". They drove by the homes of two IRA men, however the plan to kill them was aborted and the three drove back to Lurgan. They were stopped at an RUC roadblock and after an exchange of courtesies were waved through, despite the presence of Jackson with two RUC officers. While he was stationed at Newry, Weir visited Jackson's home outside Lurgan, where they discussed potential attacks against the IRA, at least four times. He began to supply the Mid-Ulster UVF with weapons he procured from a loyalist group in County Down called the "Down Orange Welfare" which comprised both former and serving members of the security forces, including Chief Inspector Harry Breen. These weapons were stored at Mitchell's farmhouse. Harry Breen (who later held the rank of Chief Superintendent) and Superintendent Robert Buchanan were both shot dead on 20 March 1989 after being ambushed outside Jonesborough, County Armagh by the Provisional IRA South Armagh Brigade. The two RUC officers were travelling in an unmarked car after attending a cross-border security conference in Dundalk with senior Garda officers.
    Weir took his first active role as a UVF paramilitary in the attempted bombing attack against Renaghan's Bar in Clontibret in the Republic of Ireland on 15 August 1976.
    More Details Hide Details The operation was aborted after Weir had driven to Clontibret on the morning of the planned attack to ascertain the roads were clear, only to discover the town had already been sealed off by the Irish Army and Gardaí. When Weir displayed his RUC warrant card to a Garda officer, he was told the Gardaí had received a tip-off from the Northern Ireland security forces that Clontibret was the target of a proposed bombing that evening. Weir returned to the Mitchell farmhouse and found it was under British Army observation. It transpired that the bomb plot had been revealed to the authorities following the earlier arrest of a UVF man from County Tyrone. The next night a UVF unit drove the bomb car, which had been meant for Clontibret, and parked it outside a nationalist pub in Keady, County Armagh; it exploded, killing a man and a woman. Two weeks later Weir was transferred to Omagh.
    Although Weir's later affidavit confirmed he had already indirectly participated in UVF and Glenanne gang operations, and had visited Mitchell's farm, according to journalist Liam Clarke, Weir officially became part of the Glenanne gang on 23 June 1976.
    More Details Hide Details He was recruited by SPG colleagues at an RUC sporting event he had attended in East Belfast when he was stationed at Castlereagh RUC station. Weir had been deeply affected by the Kingsmill massacre five months earlier, when 10 Protestant workmen had been ordered out of their minibus and gunned down by a republican group, the South Armagh Republican Action Force (SARAF). It was this attack that had provoked him into becoming a fully-fledged member of the hardline group, as Weir and the SPG believed the SARAF was a cover name for the IRA and would carry out more attacks against Protestant civilians.
    Weir later admitted to have been indirectly involved in the bombing and shooting attack at the nationalist Tully's Bar in Belleeks on 8 March 1976.
    More Details Hide Details According to his later account of events leading up to the attack, when he arrived at Mitchell's farm the designated evening, he saw between eight and ten men dressed in camouflage, parading in the farmyard. Inside the farmhouse he discussed the details of the attack with Mitchell and the others. Mitchell had shown him the floor plans of the pub's interior, highlighting the lack of escape routes for the pub's patrons. The plan was temporarily called off when it was discovered that the British Army's Parachute Regiment was on patrol in the area that evening. Weir returned to Belfast the following morning and that evening, 8 March, Weir heard the attack had gone ahead. There were no casualties, as Mitchell's floor plans were inaccurate. Once the shooting outside had commenced, the pub's customers fled into the living quarters for safety and the bomb only caused structural damage.
  • 1975
    Age 25
    He also linked Jackson to the 1975 Kay's Tavern bombing in Dundalk.
    More Details Hide Details While in prison, Weir wrote a letter to a friend in which he suggested that Jackson had links to British Intelligence Corps and Captain Robert Nairac. Weir claimed in his statement that shortly before he was sent to Newtownhamilton six months after the Strathern killing, his association with loyalist paramilitaries became known to senior RUC officers, who encouraged it. They also knew of his involvement in Strathearn's shooting death. He was summoned to a meeting with Chief Inspector Brian Fitzsimmons, head of the RUC Special Branch in Newry, who let Weir know he was aware of his UVF activities. Weir claimed "He told me he knew I had connections out there. That was why he wanted me to go out, make more connections, find out what was going on. He made it quite clear that the Special Branch was keeping an eye on me". Although Weir took this to have been an endorsement on the part of Fitzsimmons, journalist Liam Clarke felt it was "partly a warning, and partly a bid for control of his informant". Fitzsimmons placed Weir under surveillance and assigned two Special Branch officers to "befriend him".
    Jackson would assume command of the organisation's Mid-Ulster Brigade in July 1975 upon the assassination of the Brigade's founder and first commander, Billy Hanna, who also served as a sergeant in the UDR.
    More Details Hide Details The killer was allegedly Jackson. Jackson's brigade was part of a loose alliance of hardline loyalists who carried out a series of sectarian attacks against Catholics/nationalists, mainly in the South Armagh area, but also other areas in Northern Ireland as well as the Republic of Ireland. This group was later named the Glenanne gang. In addition to Jackson's Mid-Ulster Brigade, the gang comprised rogue members of the UDR, the RUC, SPG, and the UDA. It allegedly functioned under the direction of British military intelligence and/or RUC Special Branch. The gang's name derived from a farm in Glenanne, County Armagh, which was owned by RUC reservist, James Mitchell. Weir maintained that it was used as a UVF arms dump and bomb-making site. The bombs which were used in the UVF's 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings were built and stored on the farm. Weir claimed Mitchell had admitted to him that he had been involved in the bombings and he had personally seen Mitchell mixing home-made ammonium-nitrate-and-fuel-oil explosive in the farmyard on one occasion.
    He was therefore sent for his own safety to the SPG unit in Castlereagh, Belfast on 25 January 1975, fifteen days after Green's shooting.
    More Details Hide Details From Castlereagh, he travelled all over Belfast and had access to a large amount of intelligence. He regularly passed on information about suspected IRA members to loyalist paramilitaries.
  • 1973
    Age 23
    By the end of 1973, members of the SPG decided that they would have to "break the rules to curb the terrorists", by which they meant republican paramilitaries. Following the killing of an Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR) officer in 1974 by the IRA, rumours spread that Weir had been involved in the UVF's retaliatory killing of prominent IRA man John Francis Green in County Monaghan.
    More Details Hide Details Just before Green's killing, Weir had discovered that Green had been using a safe house just over the border and tipped off his RUC Special Branch colleagues.
  • 1972
    Age 22
    He was transferred to Armagh RUC station in 1972, and it was there on 1 August 1973 he was recruited into the Special Patrol Group (SPG), which was the RUC's "anti-terrorist" unit.
    More Details Hide Details It was made up entirely of Protestants. His duties involved making early morning arrests, attending the scenes of bombings and shootings, and riot control. He claimed the SPG officers were "very anti-republican, and sectarian attitudes were common". Weir and his colleagues routinely beat up Catholics suspected of harbouring republican sentiments. The SPG saw themselves as being at war with the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA); as such they considered the loyalist paramilitaries to be their allies and it was common practise to alert Ulster Defence Association (UDA) and UVF suspects before their homes were to be raided by the security forces.
  • 1970
    Age 20
    Initially he had considered joining the Garda Síochána, the police force of the Republic of Ireland; however, in keeping with his family's unionist political traditions, he opted to join Northern Ireland's police force, the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) in March 1970 when he was 20 years of age.
    More Details Hide Details Upon his completion of training in Enniskillen Training Depot, he was first posted to the Strandtown RUC station in loyalist east Belfast.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1950
    Age 0
    Weir was born in 1950 in County Monaghan, Ireland and brought up in the Church of Ireland religion on an estate near Castleblaney, where his father was employed as a gamekeeper for an Anglo-Irish family.
    More Details Hide Details He was educated at The King's Hospital school Dublin. Over six feet tall, powerfully built, with blond hair and blue eyes, he had an imposing physical presence, which made him stand out in a crowd.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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