The people of Londonderry had begun to hope the years of violence were finally behind them, the years when gunmen would claim to be acting in their name for a glorious cause.
Now the killing of the journalist Lyra McKee by a member of a dissident republican group has prompted renewed revulsion in the very community it claims to represent.
Vigils attended by thousands of people were held yesterday for Ms McKee in both the nationalist Creggan estate where she was killed and in the city centre.
They came as two teenagers were arrested by police in connection with the murder. The men, aged 18 and 19, were detained under anti-terrorism legislation and were taken to a police station in Belfast for questioning.
Ms McKee, 29, was shot in the head by suspects who police believe were linked to the New IRA, as they clashed with police on Thursday night.
The New IRA is one of a number of armed groups opposed to the peace process and recently claimed responsibility for a series of parcel bombs sent to London and Glasgow in March.
Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) fear a new generation of terrorists is emerging, composed of individuals too young to remember the Troubles and born after the signing of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement.
Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy, who is leading the hunt for Ms McKee’s killers, said: "What we are seeing is a new breed of terrorist coming through the ranks and that for me is a very worrying situation."
Yesterday one simple sentiment rang out as people gathered to mourn Ms McKee’s loss: “Not in our name”.
Those were the words left on a heart-shaped tribute yesterday at the spot where she was killed on Thursday, signed simply from “the people of Derry”.
A floral tribute at the scene left by Ms McKee's partner, Sara Canning read: "My beautiful Lyra, our time together was too short, and your light was snuffed out too soon. I love you forever, your Sara xxx."
On a nearby wall a pro-dissident republican slogan had been altered to read "IRA are done" , branding it a "defeated army".
Outside Londonderry’s landmark 19th century Guildhall a bouquet of flowers was also left with the similar message: “Never in my name”.
Signing a book of condolence John McGonagle, a local resident and business man who remembers all too well the years of The Troubles, said: "I am revolted by the whole thing. It is a retrograde step.
"Derry is one of the most wonderful cities in the world. It does not need it or deserve it and Lyra did not deserve to die, it is as simple as that."
"There has just been a quiet anger. I normally would not do this sort of thing but in this case it merits it really."
Father Joseph Gormley, the Catholic priest who read the last rites for Ms McKee in Altnagelvin Hospital, said people had been repulsed by her death.
"We have a small group of people who want to play political games with our lives and want to use our community as a place where they can play their little war games,” he said. "People in our community have tried to have conversations with these people and I have been involved to some degree with those conversations myself.
"They have not listened and now our community are finally saying 'enough is enough, please get off our backs'."
Indicative of the changed mood was the appearance of Arlene Foster, the leader of the unionist DUP, alongside Mary Lou McDonald, the leader of Sinn Fein, at vigil on Friday, close to where Ms McKee was shot. Reports suggest Ms Foster was applauded by bystanders.
CCTV released by the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) showed Ms McKee’s final moments as she stood among a crowd of other innocent bystanders and raised her phone in the air, apparently to photograph the violence.
Mobile phone footage also released by detectives showed a masked gunman lean from behind cover and appear to fire shots towards police and onlookers. The same individual was also photographed with another man lighting a petrol bomb.
Police, who described the shooting as a "terrorist incident", believe the violence was orchestrated in response to an earlier search by officers aimed at preventing trouble associated with this week's anniversary of the Easter Rising.
Officers believe more than one person was involved in the murder. In the video footage an accomplice beside a gunman appears to crouch and pick something up from the spot where the shots were fired.
Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy, who is leading the inquiry, urged members of the community to come forward with information.
"People saw the gunman and people saw those who goaded young people out onto the streets, people know who they are," he said.