A ceremony to mark Ireland's first national day of commemoration took place in the Garden of Remembrance where President Patrick Hillery unveiled a plaque to honour all Irish men and women who died in past wars or on service with the United Nations.

An interdenominational service conducted by representatives of the six main churches followed the unveiling and the large gathering included members of the government, opposition parties, the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland, Social Democratic and Labour Party, as well as members of the judiciary and the diplomatic corps. Fianna Fáil leader Charles Haughey was absent, but was represented by Tánaiste Brian Lenihan and spokesperson on Defence Noel Treacy.

The Dublin Brigade of the old IRA and the National Commemoration Day Association opposed the ceremony as

The new plaque was repugnant to the official dedication of the Garden as it would now cover many Irishmen who served in the British forces and who died in this country opposing the cause of Irish freedom.

The ceremony passed off without incident but Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald was showered with silver coins on his arrival to the Garden of Remembrance.

An RTÉ News report by Michael Ronayne broadcast on 13 July 1986.