The exiled UFF assassin would use the tired quip on drunken trips with his cronies on a hired boat called Tikiti Boo in the picturesque town of Ayr on the west coast of Scotland.
Our snap shows one of the moments the tattoo-covered triggerman – killed by a heart attack at the end of last month after a fall at his flat – made the gag that will sicken families of his victims.
We can also reveal openly gay skinhead Skelly, who’s linked to at least eight murders:
The image here of Skelly fishing with Adair and shaven-headed heavies were captured in 2008 when Skelly was filmed in an an episode of Danny Dyer’s Deadliest Men.
It also showed the loyalist picking up the actor in a car blasting dance music and filled with his cronies.
He intimidated Danny straight away by laughing to his pals: “Take him for a f*****g drive – take him and kidnap him. We’ll hold him for ransom.”
Moments later, Skelly stunned the EastEnders actor by telling him on the drive home he survived an assassination attempt at his Ayr flat by two gunmen.
He said: “I’ve been in my flat for seven years, with only one bit of hassle – two guys tried to shoot me dead outside it one night.”
As soon as they got into Skelly’s grubby apartment, he pulled out his bulletproof vest from the bottom of his wardrobe, telling the actor:
“It’s a Mark 5 – it’ll stop an AK-47… well I f*****g hope so”
Jabbing at Danny’s head, he says about assassins: “If they’re anyway f*****g clever they’ll shoot you in the head.”
He adds about his vest: “It’s just a way of life, it’s just laid there, I haven’t worn it. I only wore it when I went to Belfast.
“My dad was in hospital, I came up into the Shankill Road and my mates went like that, ‘Here, put that on’, because there was a loyalist feud on, and I put my jacket on over it, and that was that.
“And they said, ‘Take it back with you’, and now it’s f*****g laying there.
“It’s not illegal – there’s nothing illegal about it.”
The one-time leading member of the UFF C Coy, headed by Skelly’s lifelong blood-brother pal Johnny ‘Mad Dog' Adair, fled to Scotland with Adair
and fellow thugs amid a bloody loyalist feud.
He thought Ayr was “beautiful” and its residents “lovely” and loved shopping at a nearby clothes shop that catered for gay men.
A source said: “Skelly loved appearing on that show as it let him relive his glory days and act hard in front of Danny – who is hard as custard
in real life and only a tough guy on screen.
“His true colours really came through – he was a remorseless killer who only got teary when talking about his dead lover Harry and his fallen
loyalist ‘comrades’, but never welled up for his murder victims.”
Conversations from the 2008 show unreported until now included Danny asking Skelly about the tatts that covered his body.
Skelly said: “My first tattoo was a swift and my very last tattoo was one on my d**k – I’m not winding you up. It’s an anchor.
“So when I use it, you can say, ‘Wind my anchor in’.”
Skelly, who blamed his years of violence on his childhood, saying: “My dad was a vigilante, and the men vigilante’d the area, to protect me from what he believed was the enemy – republicans, Catholics, nationalists. We grew up in an age when you were five or six and you used to go round the doors and you used to collect all the milk bottles, to make petrol bombs that night to protect your area – throwing stones at the barricade.
“It was drummed into you. You just fought Catholics – they were the enemy, and they felt the same as us; we were the enemy.
“The IRA had the upper hand, so we decided to fight fire with fire and fight the IRA and have a battlefield – and they didn’t like it.” Skelly also takes Danny back to his Belfast “stomping ground” – where he admits if he had born a few yards from his home in a nationalist area he’d have joined the IRA.
Stressing he had no remorse over his violence, he said: “People will tell you violence is wrong, but I once had a policeman tell me, ‘If you believe in it, you can’t take that belief away’.
“AndI had a strong belief what I was doing was right. I didn’t do it to fill my pockets with money, I risked my freedom and I risked my life to
do what I done.”
McCrory also visited the spot that got him sentenced to 16 years jail.
In July 1992, the thug, along with ‘Fat’ Jackie Thompson and two others were stopped by an RUC roadblock on their way to assassinate IRA chiefs
Brian Gillen and Martin Lynch – with Skelly armed to the teeth with an AK47 assault rifle, Browning double barrel magazine and a sledgehammer.
He said about having their path blocked on their “military operation” by a cop car: “I seen the f*****g police car, and it was parked across the bridge.
“We started firing and he car was sliding along the bridge, and there were all the bullet holes… there were 33 rounds fired, it was basically
f*****g chaos on that brie – I thought it was all over.”
Being sentenced to 16 years in the Maze, where he did time with his pal Adair, didn’t leave Skelly reformed.
how they partied away their time in the prison before he was freed in 1998 along with 499 other prisoners under the Good Friday Agreement,
Skelly said outside the lock-up some of his “happiest” days were spent inside.
Before wandering around gazing at his dead loyalist partners in crime’s graves at Roselawn, Skelly visited a mural to one of the most vicious of the
dead – Stevie ‘Top Gun’ McKeag. gushed about the murderer – said to have killed 17-year-old Catholic
teenager Damien Walsh in the ‘Dairy Farm killing’ of 1993 before dying of a drugs overdose aged 30 in 2000: “He was a dedicated loyalist and a
good friend and a cracking volunteer for C Company.”
Back in Scotland, he is also seen jokes around with Adair before they head out for a fishing trip in Ayr.
He pretends to box the ex-loyalist terror chief when he jokes about Skelly’s homosexuality by saying he has always been “more of a giver
than a taker”.
Adair said about their heyday as feared loyalists: “Sammy was never one for rank. We just went on operations and never questioned the orders we were given.
“He was more of a footsoldier… he was more a giver than a taker.”
Adair turned sincere when he added about their blood brother friendship: “It’s like being married to someone – in life you find that one true
love. If it’s your wife, you marry her. “People like Sammy – as a friend, you only find that once in a lifetime, and that’s a fact.”
He went on to ask Skely if they could discuss their alleged crimes by prefacing the descriptions with the phrase “rumour has it”.
Fearing they could be implicating themselves about their past violence on camera, panicked Skelly is seen stepping in, flapping his hands and
laughing nervously, while warning: “No, no, no rumour has it.”
The pair also take a trip to The Men’s Shop – Skelly’s favourite gay-friendly clothes store, where he was filmed hugging its owner and
standing proudly in front of stock including a T-shirt emblazoned with the message ‘Sex Makes Me Come And Go’ – and pants saying ‘I Want Out’
and ‘Heatseeker’ above the crotch.
Skelly’s only moments of regret and emotion are when discussing his dead loyalist pals and his long-term lover Harry, for whom he cared after he
suffered catastrophic injuries in a car smash.
The terrorist moved to Scotland on August 2, 1998, to nurse Harry, who died the following January from his injuries.
Skelly welled up as he called Harry – who visited him in the Maze where he revelled in conjugal visits – a “lovely” and “wonderful” man who he
wanted to gift with stars from the skies.
He concluded he loves how the gay pals he hung with at Pride festivals don’t “judge”, while saying he could live with his past.
Dressed in a pink T-shirt while wearing a rainbow ribbon, Skelly rambled while watching drag queens and semi-clad men in leathers on a march: “I just believe in equality for everybody – gay, straight, black, white, Asian,
Indian – we should all be able to live – we’re a multicultural society.
“Lots of people in the gay community who knew what I was, they don’t judge me. My past will be mine until the day I die.
“I can live with what I done and I can move on.”
Skelly died from a massive heart attack during a drinking binge after he fell off the wagon following the death of his only son Samuel Madine, aged in his 30s, who passed away last September from organ failure.
After hitting the bottle to try and numb his grief, the 17-stone killer fell forward and smashed his face off the steps of the communal area of his
flat complex at Stonecrop Place – leading neighbours who knew of his notorious past to mistake his bloodied body as the result of a revenge
hit for his bloodshed.