Published Sunday, 18 August 2013
The men, who served with the Light Infantry, died after the vehicle they were travelling in hit an IRA device on a road near the Co Tyrone town on 20 August 1988.
A further 28 people were injured.
A service was held on Sunday morning to remember the victims, surviving families and those who were hurt in the attack, ahead of its 25th anniversary this Tuesday.
The gathering took place at the site of the bombing on the Ballygawley to Omagh road. A subsequent church service was held in Newtownsaville Church of Ireland.
Some of those who treated casualties at the scene were there.
Councillor Allan Rainey said: "I rushed down only to find that it was mayhem. Obviously the bomb had gone off and people were strewn all around the place and the meadow behind me was full of people screaming, looking for assistance. It was total anarchy."
The soldiers, who had just completed around 18 months of service in Northern Ireland, were returning to their base in Omagh when the bomb exploded underneath their unmarked bus.
Seven of them died instantly while an eighth died in hospital. They were aged 18 to 21.
Representatives from the military, emergency services and local community attended the special memorial service, during which wreaths were laid.
Dr Dominic Pinto, who was a surgeon at Tyrone County Hospital, said: "It was chaos when they came in because there were a number of injuries. What saddened me was how young these guys were, they were like my own young children."
Stephen Gault from Innocent Victims United, which claims to represent some 8,000 victims of Troubles violence, said it was a "poignant" event.
He added: "As Chairman of Justice for Innocent Victims of Terrorism I was privileged to be in attendance at what was an extremely touching 'Act of Remembrance,' held at the site of the Ballygawley Bus Bombing massacre."
© UTV News