Lyra Catherine McKee was born in Belfast on 31st March 1990 and was murdered on the 18th April 2019. She was only 29 and her career was just beginning to take off.
Lyra was "a rising star" of Irish Writing at the time she was callously murdered, but doors were not held open for Lyra in the media industry for her to glide through when she started out. In truth, there were many within her field who made it their mission to try to stop Lyra's blossoming career at every turn. But with the support of our mother, family and friends, Lyra dug tunnels through the barriers that sought to prevent her from achieving her dreams using hard-work, dedication and determination to succeed.
Lyra started THE MUCKRAKER, a BLOG site to allow both herself and other journalists to post stories that they wanted to share when no one in the mainstream of the industry wanted to print them. Lyra's famous 2014 BLOG "Letter to my 14-year-old self" was later transformed into a short film by Stay Beautiful Films.
In addition to being an online editor for the news aggregator Mediagazer since the age of 21, Lyra had worked as a freelance journalist persuing investigative stories since she was 15. Years of hard-work lead to Lyra breaking a number of FRONT PAGE stories, writing a book and securing a two-book book deal with publishing giants, Faber and Faber.
Lyra's public speaking career was also beginning to take off and she traveled across the UK and Europe speaking on topics such as the role of the working-class in the media, maximising digital technologies for modern journalism and her experience of breaking down barriers to reach her goals as an investigative journalist.
Lyra's TedX Talk on the need for Difficult Conversations was a huge success and has gained nearly 150,000 views on YouTube alone.
Lyra was dedicated to giving a voice to the voiceless, helping to uncover their truths. She believed that difficult conversations are the only way to begin escape the chains that enslave us to outdated belief systems.
Lyra's successes include:
Sky News Young Journalist of the Year (2006)
Forbes 30 Under 30 Europe: Media (2016)
Irish Times - 10 rising stars of Irish writing (March 2019)
Angels with Blue Faces (posthumous publication 2019)
Lost, Found Remembered: Lyra Mckee in her own words (2020)