Friends of the Somme - Mid Ulster Branch  
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Date Name Information
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Submitted by his family.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid From the Mid Ulster Mail dated approximately July 1947:
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid The CWGC record Private Gordon Reid as the son of John and Elizabeth Reid of Cookstown, County Tyrone.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Gordon Reid is commemorated locally on Cookstown Cenotaph and Molesworth Presbyterian Roll of Honour.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Private G Reid is buried at Ranville War Cemetery in Calvados, France. His inscription reads: GONE TO HIS HEAVENLY HOME OF REST, WE MISS HIM MOST WHO LOVED HIM BEST
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Private Gordon Reid was killed in action near Ranville on 7th July 1944. He was 20 years old.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Private Reid parachuted into France again with the 7th Battalion Parachute Regiment on the 6th June 1944. Their objective was to secure the Eastern flank of the British landings and to secure the village of Benoville and subsequently the area around Ranville. The 6th Airborne spent the next two months consolidating their position in this area.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Private Gordon Reid parachuted into France as part of a joint operation with the S.A.S, led by Lieutenant Colonel Blair Mayne, Captain Pat Garstain and four other Ulster born soldiers including Cookstown man, Tot Barker. Their objective was to destroy the train was successful. While being airlifted out the group came under heavy enemy fire and Tot Barker was hauled on to the plane by Blair Mayne.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid The Parachute Regiment was part of the Army Air Corps, The AAC was formed to administer the Glider Regiments and Parachute Regiments in 1942. The Special Air Service (S.A.S.) was included in 1944.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Private Gordon Reid served with the 7th Battalion of the Parachute Regiment, 5th Parachute Brigade, 6th Airborne. The reason the 6th Airborne were given the number 6, was to mislead the Germans into thinking the British Airborne had six divisions, when in fact they had only two.
19/09/2019 Pte. Gordon Reid Gordon Reid was the son of John and Elizabeth Reid of Cookstown. He was born about 1924.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis 01920
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Fusilier Victor Purvis is commemorated on Cookstown Cenotaph.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Fusilier Victor Purvis’ remains were returned home and he was buried in Cookstown Cemetery.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Whilst in England, on 3rd June 1942, Fusilier Victor George Purvis died as a result of drowning near Cornwall while training.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis The 70th (Young Soldiers) Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers was raised at Donaghadee, County Down on 24th December 1940 for those young soldiers who had volunteered and had not yet reached the age to be conscripted. The battalion moved to Craigavad on 18th January 1941 and to Donaghadee on 9th October 1941. It remained there until 24 October 1941, when it moved to Larne and then to Britain. The battalion never saw active service abroad. It was engaged in civil defence duties until its disbandment in 1943, due to the British government lowering the age of consent for conscription.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Victor Purvis joined the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers at the age of 18 on the 27th November 1941 at Omagh.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Prior to enlistment he worked as an apprentice plumber.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Known family: William Purvis, Annie Jane Purvis, Victor George Purvis (born on 12th August 1923), Sadie Purvis, Robert Purvis, Jean Purvis.
19/09/2019 Fus Victor George Purvis Victor George Purvis was the fourth son of William and Annie Jane Purvis of Cookstown. He was born on 12th August 1923.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis The CWGC record Fusilier Samuel John Purvis as the son of George Purvis and of Jane Purvis (nee McMaster) of Cookstown, Co. Tyrone.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis Fusilier Samuel Purvis is commemorated on locally on Cookstown Cenotaph.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis Fusilier Samuel Purvis is buried in a collective grave (three people) at Pembroke Military Cemetery on the island of Malta. His iinscription reads THY WILL BE DONE. The collective grave is almost certainly down to limitation of space in the cemetery.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis On 25th April 1942, the enemy launched many air raids on the island (as many as 20-25 on that day alone), during which Fusilier Samuel Purvis lost his life. The list of casualties on that day was substantial.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis Fusilier Samuel Purvis was serving with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Irish Fusiliers during the Battle of Malta.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis Samuel Purvis joined the Royal Irish Fusiliers on 27th December 1937 and had seen service in Egypt and Palestine.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis The family lived near the Red Bridge, Drapersfield, and then Church Street, Cookstown.
18/09/2019 Fus Samuel John Purvis Samuel John Purvis was the son of George Purvis and Jane Purvis (nee McMaster), of Cookstown. He was born in 1919.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill 01919
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Submitted by his father, Harry O’Neill
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill From the Mid Ulster Mail, unknown date possibly in 1947:
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill The CWGC record Fusilier Leo O’Neill as the son of Harry J and Elizabeth O'Neill of Stewartstown, County Tyrone.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Fusilier Leo O’Neill is commemorated locally on Stewartstown War Memorial.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Fusilier Leonard O’Neill has no known grave and is commemorated on Rangoon Memorial in Burma.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill It is believed Fusilier O’Neill died in an action near Donbaik, Burma when a patrol from D Company, 1st Inniskillings engaged a much stronger force of Japanese troops resulting in many casualties, some from sniper fire.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Fusilier Leo O’Neill was serving with the 1st Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in Burma when he was killed in this action on 7th January 1943, aged 20.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Leonard O’Neill enlisted with the Inniskillings on 30th July 1940, shortly after his 18th birthday at Omagh, Co. Tyrone.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Prior to enlisting, Leonard had worked as a brick worker and labourer.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Leonard O’Neill was born on 18th July 1922.
18/09/2019 Fus Leonard O'Neill Leonard (Leo) O’Neill was the son of Harry J and Elizabeth O’Neill of Stewartstown.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill 1000 hours. Enemy attacked and inflicted further casualties. From now on the battalion split into small forces and withdrew further into the jungle on the hill sides.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill 0830 hours. Enemy were again bumped. The battalion withdrew slightly and lay up. All ranks were suffering from lack of sleep.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill (8 April) Just as dawn was breaking the advance guard (14 people of C Company under Lieutenant J R Bathgate) pushed forward too quickly and disappeared. They were not seen again.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill (7 April) Early this morning Inniskillings bumped into Japs in Padana Chang, suffered a few casualties. As the enemy appeared to be in strength in this area, the battalion lay up in the undergrowth the whole day. Enemy were much in evidence and made considerable poise, firing indiscriminately at any signs of movement. Captain A O Karstaedt, Medical Officer, killed. Plan was made to move at dusk southwards and then strike out due west to come out on the beach south of Indin. Movement that night through the enemy lines was extremely difficult but at dawn we reached the foothills at about 587995.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill 1930 hours. Leading men of the battalion reached a deep river bed. A.D.S., who were in front of the Inniskillings, lost contact and passed message back that the enemy were reported ahead. Each unit took its own route from then on.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill 1000 Hours. Withdrawal began. Route across country to Kwason chiefly jungle covered hills with steep drops into chaungs (river or stream). Rate of movement less than half a mile an hour. The brigade moved in single file. By dusk the force was clear of the main ridge of hills. There was no moon and darkness fell, direction was kept by touch only.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill (6 April) 0700 Hours. Orders for withdrawal given by 47th Brigade. Brigade to withdraw to Kwason. Order of withdrawal – 5/8 Punjabis, Brigade HQ, A.D.S, Inniskillings. The original order to withdraw down the Sinoh Pass to Indin was countermanded when the enemy blocked the Pass, cutting off 1/7 Punjabis from the rest of the Brigade. 1/7 Punjabis were to make their own way out.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill (5 April) 0800 hours. A Company withdrawn within Inniskillings Boundary - a quiet day – Companies improving sites for defence of area. Yesterday news was received that the Japs have taken out the Indin Headquarters at 541015.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill 01918
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill From the Battalion Diary from April 1943 - 1st Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers:-
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill The CWGC record Fusilier Hugh O’Neill as the son of Bridget O'Neill of Cookstown, County Tyrone.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill Fusilier Hugh O’Neill is commemorated locally on Cookstown Cenotaph.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill Fusilier Hugh O’Neill has no known grave and is commemorated on Rangoon Memorial in Burma.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill On 7th - 8th April 1943, Hugh O’Neill was part of a patrol which engaged a much stronger Japanese force in Padana Chaung area, Burma. The patrol suffered heavy casualties as the enemy seemed to be in strength. A decision was made that the battalion lay up in the undergrowth for a whole day. Any sign of movement was met with indiscriminate firing from the Japanese, in the course of which, their Medical Officer was killed. The plan was made to move at dusk southwards and then strike due west to come out on the beach south of Indin. Movement that night through enemy lines was extremely difficult. Fusilier O’Neill was killed in action during one of these engagements, aged 21.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill The 1st Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers were stationed in India prior to the outbreak of World War Two. When the Japanese swept through south east Asia and into Burma, the battalion were rushed north of Rangoon to destroy oil wells in March 1942. They succeeded, but less than a third of the battalion eventually returned to India.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill Hugh had worked as a message boy prior to enlisting with the Inniskillings on the 26th June1940 at Omagh.
18/09/2019 Fus Hugh O'Neill Hugh O’Neill was the son of Hugh and Bridget O’Neill. He was born on 23rd January 1922.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell 01917
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell The CWGC record Flight Sergeant (Wireless Operator / Air Gunner) John Newell as the son of Samuel and Elizabeth Newell of Dungannon, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell Flight Sergeant John Newell is commemorated locally on Stewartstown War Memorial and on Stewartstown Church of Ireland Roll Of Honour.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell Flight Sergeant (Wireless Operator / Air Gunner) Newell was Mentioned in Despatches.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell Flight Sergeant John Newell is buried in Ismailia War Memorial Cemetery in Egypt. His inscription reads: DEAR TO OUR HEARTS IS THE PLACE WHERE YOU SLEEP.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell Of the three crew on board, Flight Sergeant Newell was the only fatality. Sergeant R T Spiller and Sergeant K K Bevan were injured but survived.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell The aircraft encountered technical problems after take-off and dived into ground whilst attempting a forced landing.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell On 23rd May 1941, his Wellington bomber (Serial No T2812) was commencing a test flight from Shallufa in Egypt.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell Flight Sergeant John Newell served as a Wireless Operator and Air Gunner with 37 Squadron of the Royal Air Force in World War Two.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell John and Joseph Newell, who died in WW1, had an older brother called Samuel Newell who served with the Royal Irish Fusiliers in the war. Samuel was born in 1890. All hailed from Stewartstown.
17/09/2019 Flt. Sgt John Newell John Newell was the son of Samuel and Elizabeth Newell. He was born about 1920.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill The CWGC record Sergeant William Neill as the son of William and Jane Neill of Cookstown. He is also recorded as the husband of Elizabeth Neill of Gortin.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill Sergeant William Neill is commemorated on Cookstown Cenotaph.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill Sergeant William Neill is buried in Cookstown New Cemetery.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill William’s son William (junior) served with the British Army of the Rhine (B.A.O.R.)
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill Sergeant William Neill died of illness while in service at Southend General Hospital in Essex on 22nd April 1945, aged 51
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill William Neill re-enlisted once more with the 5th (Home Defence) Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers on 5th August 1940.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill Known family: William Neill, Elizabeth (Bessie) Neill (nee McFarlane), George Neill, Margaret Neill, Clyde Neill, June Neill, James Neill, William Neill.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill William was the husband of Elizabeth Neill (nee McFarlane), who hailed from Gortgonis, Coalisland. They went on to have at least six children.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill William was discharged on 14th December 1922 in Hamilton, Scotland with the rank of Corporal.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill He re-enlisted on 3rd March 1919 in Le Harve and transferred to Army Reserve on 5th March 1919 in Dublin.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill Private William Neill served in the First World War at Salonika, Egypt and France and was wounded on 8th November 1918. His army service number was 3881.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill The 1911 census lists William as age 17, living with the family at house 30 in Millburn Street, Cookstown. William had left school and was employed as a mill worker. His father was a farm servant.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill Known family (parents): William Neill, Jane Neill, William Neill (born 25th February 1894), Margaret Neill (born 10th May 1895), James Neill (born 21st August 1896?) Thomas Neill (born 28th March 1898), John Neill (born 23rd April 1900. died 23rd April 1900), John Neill (born 22nd March 1901), Mary Neill (born 16th March 1904), Sarah Neill (born 30th May 1906).
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill The 1901 census lists William as age 7, living with the family at house 1 in Loughry, Tullaghogue, Cookstown. His father was a coachman and domestic servant.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill William Neill was born on born 25th February 1894 in the district of Magherafelt. He was the oldest of eight children, six surviving.
17/09/2019 Sgt. William Neill William Neill was the eldest son of William and Jane Neill. William Neill and Sarah Jane Robinson were married on 1st November 1893 in the district of Cookstown.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw The CWGC record Guardsman Thomas James Megaw as the son of Robert and Mary Megaw. He is also recorded as the husband of Florence Elizabeth Megaw of Moneymore, County Londonderry.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw Guardsman Thomas Megaw is buried at Medjez-el Bab War Cemetery in Tunisia. His inscription reads: LOVE NEVER FAILETH.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw Guardsman Thomas Megaw was killed in action in Tunisia on 27th April 1943, just prior to the Axis forces being defeated in Africa in May 1943.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw As part of the 1st Army, the 1st Battalion of the Irish Guards embarked for North Africa on 10th March 1943.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw Guardsman Thomas Megaw’s battalion embarked for Norway 10th April 1941, taking part in the Battle of Norvik in Norway.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw Thomas had been training for the Police Service when he was persuaded to join the Irish Guards around 1937-38. He joined the Irish Guards with the intention of staying on for three years but his plans were interrupted by the outbreak of World War Two.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw Thomas was the husband of Florence Elizabeth Megaw.
16/09/2019 Gman Thomas James Megaw Thomas James Megaw was the son of Robert and Mary Megaw.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin 01916
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin 01866
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin The CWGC record Sergeant Edward Colhoun McLaughlin as the son of Edward and Jennie McLaughlin, of Ballyronan, County Londonderry, Northern Ireland.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Sergeant Edward (Ted) McLaughlin is commemorated locally on the Roll of Honour at St John’s (Woods) Church of Ireland, Ballyronan.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Sergeant Edward McLaughlin has no known grave and is commemorated on Runnymede Memorial in Surrey.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Ted’s sister, Margaret served with the Royal Navy, based on H.M.S. Caroline. In the latter years of the war she received a letter from the Red Cross stating that the whereabouts of Ted’s grave was unknown.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Dear Mr McLaughlin, Further to my telegram to the 3rd January, it is with the deepest regret that I write to you confirming that up to the present, no news has been received of your son, Sergeant Air Gunner Edward Colhoun McLaughlin who did not return from an operational sortie on the night of Sunday, 2/3 January 1944. Unfortunately, there is very little information that I can give you as nothing was heard from the plane after it took off from Base at 1140pm on 2nd January, to attack targets in Berlin. Although nothing was heard, there is, of course, a possibility that the crew were forced to abandon their aircraft over enemy territory, and they may be safe, although prisoners of war. Ted had been with us four months and during this time he had proved himself to be a very capable and efficient member of a gallant crew. They had taken part in many successful sorties against the most heavily defended targets in Germany. He was very popular with his colleagues, and we all desire to express our deepest sympathy and share with you the hope that he and his crew will soon be reported safe.’
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin The following letter was received by Ted’s father Edward, dated 4th January 1944 written by Wing Commander J.F. Dilworth, R.A.F. Station, Grimsby, Lincolnshire.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin 1316590 Sergeant Richard Edward Leonard STONEMAN
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin J/22214 Flying Officer James Mcvie OGILVIE
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin 2204122 Sergeant Edward Colhoun McLAUGHLIN
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin 1348243 Sergeant Gordon Hewett HENDRY
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin J/19170 Pilot Officer Gerald William HENDERSON
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin 1126757 Sergeant Ninian BOWMAN
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin The crew of the Lancaster on that night were:
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin The aircraft never returned and the aircraft and crew were lost without trace. Sergeant McLaughlin was 20 years old.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin On the night on Sunday 2nd January 1944, Sergeant Edward McLaughlin’s Lancaster bomber (Serial No JB549) took off from Grimsby for a night raid over Berlin. Sergeant McLaughlin was air gunner.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin During the war, Sergeant McLaughlin flew numerous missions over Hanover, Bocum, Hagen, Munich, Kassel, Stuttgart, Dusseldorf and Berlin.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Edward McLaughlin joined the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and served with 100 Squadron.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Prior to enlisting, Edward worked in Walsley, England in his uncle’s grocer shop.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Edward McLaughlin attended the Rainey School in Magherafelt between 1938 and 1941. His sister Margaret attended between 1936 and 1941.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin The family lived in the Ballyronan area.
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Known family: Edward McLaughlin, Jeanie McLaughlin, Margaret C McLaughlin, Edward Colhoun McLaughlin (born about 1920).
15/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Colhoun McLaughlin Edward Colhoun McLaughlin was the son of Edward and Jeanie McLaughlin. He was born about 1925.
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin 01915
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin The CWGC record Fusilier Ernest McGuckin as the son of Emily Morrison of Dennistoun, Glasgow.
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin Submitted by his mother Mrs Morrison.
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin From the Mid Ulster Mail possibly dated 1948:
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin Fusilier Ernest McGuckin is buried at Klagenfurt War Cemetery in Austria. His inscription reads: THE HAPPY DAYS WE ONCE ENJOYED, HOW SWEET THEIR MEMORY STILL. GOOD NIGHT, ERNEST
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin Fusilier Ernest McGuckin was serving with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers when he died as a result of a road traffic accident while in service in post war Austria, on 27th December 1946, aged 25.
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin Prior to enlisting in the army on 8th September 1938, Ernest worked as a farm labourer.
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin Known family: Robert McGuckin, Emily McGuckin, Ernest McGuckin (born 21st October 1919).
15/09/2019 Fus Ernest McGuckin Ernest McGuckin was the son of Robert and Emily McGuckin. Ernest McGuckin was born in Stewartstown on 21st October 1919. They lived at Low Cross, Tullyhogue.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick 01914
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick The CWGC record Fusilier William McCormick as the son of Alexander and Annie McCormick of Moneymore, County Londonderry.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick Submitted by his sister Mrs Watterson on the anniversary of his death:
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick From the Mid Ulster Mail, date unknown:
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick Fusilier William McCormick has no known grave and is commemorated on Panel 6 of the Cassino Memorial, which is located in the Cassino War Cemetery.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick The 2nd Battalion and 6th Battalions of the Inniskillings were later heavily involved in the invasion of Italy and in the hard fighting as the Allied armies advanced slowly up the peninsula in the face of the determined German resistance. By early 1944 the Germans were putting up a stubborn defence particularly around the famous abbey of Monte Cassino. General Montgomery, commanding the 8th Army decided to launch an attack at the west end of the enemy line at the mouth of the Garigliano River, while at the same time landing a force on the coast behind the enemy's rear at Anzio. The 2nd Inniskillings were part of a force to cross the river and advance over a plain commanded by enemy positions. The battalion succeeded in crossing the river and advancing under heavy fire and a German-held farm was taken at the point of the bayonet. Casualties were so heavy that only a Lance-Sergeant was left to take command, all officers or N.C.O.s having been killed or wounded. Under very heavy fire more Inniskillings managed to cross the river and the main objective was soon captured. Unfortunately the rest of the Corps attack had been a failure and the Inniskilling soon found their flanks dangerously exposed, but held their positions in the face of heavy enemy counter attacks until relieved.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick The British Army in Italy at this time where given the erroneous title of the ‘D-Day Dodgers’, an unfair description given that they encountered some of the fiercest fighting of the Italian Campaign in and around Cassino.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick Fusilier William McCormick was serving with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers when he was killed in action in Italy on 29th May 1944, aged 25.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick His parents went on to live at Conyngham Street, Moneymore. His sister, Mrs Watterson, went on to live at Urbal Road in Coagh.
15/09/2019 Fus William McCormick William McCormick was the son of Alexander and Annie McCormick. He was born about 1919.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly ‘My dear Mrs Kelly, I am writing to offer you on my own behalf and on behalf of all ranks of this Headquarters our deepest sympathy in the heavy loss you have sustained in the death of your brave son, Fusilier Kelly. He was killed at his post bravely resisting an attack by the Japanese on this Headquarters. He died instantaneously doing his duty well and conscientiously as he has always done it since I have known him. I can assure you that no man was more liked by all who came into contact with him than your son and his quiet willingness earned him the respect of everyone with whom he came into contact. By his death we have all lost a friend and the British Army a fine soldier. Our Padre will have written to you telling you of your son’s burial, and a suitable cross has been erected to mark his resting place and that of the brave fellows who died with him. We shall all mourn his loss but our sorrow will be slight compared to yours, but believe me you have the deepest sympathy of us all. Yours sincerely, Captain Davies, H.Q. 29 Infantry Brigade Group, India Command (Burma).’
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly Letter dated 18th March 1944 from Captain Davies
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly ‘Dear Mrs Kelly, You will have heard long before this reaches you of the loss of your son, Fusilier Kelly. May I tell you how deeply we feel for you, and how sorry are all his comrades in the Brigade. We buried him in the shade of a tree in a green valley in Burma. Later on, his body will be put in a war cemetery and a beautiful stone will be put up in place of the little cross which now marks his grave. May God bless you and strengthen and comfort you in your loss until the day of reunion. With our very deep sympathy to you and all who mourn your son. Yours Sincerely, Peter Mayhew. C.F. 2nd Battalion, East Lancs Regiment, India Command (Burma).’
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly Letter dated 8th March 1944 from Reverend Peter Mayhew, Chaplain to the Forces
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly Fusilier William Kelly is buried at Taukkyan War Cemetery, Burma.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly After Fusilier Kelly’s death, the following letters were sent to Mrs Kelly at Factory Square, Cookstown.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly Fusilier William Kelly was serving with the 1st Battalion of the Royal Scots Fusiliers when he was killed in action in Burma on 6th March 1944 whilst defending Brigade Headquarters from the Japanese.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly In 1943, William’s mother received a telegram, dated 2nd February 1943, stating that her son had died of wounds in Madagascar. Further notification was sent on that he had been wounded and taken to hospital from where he was discharged and returned to his unit. The telegram stated that the War Office sincerely regretted the misinformation and the anxiety it may have caused.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly Fusilier William Kelly served in Egypt, Palestine and India.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly William Kelly worked as a farm labourer prior to enlisting in the army on 14th December 1933.
14/09/2019 Fus William Kelly William Kelly was the son of Mary Kelly. William Kelly was born on 3rd July 1910. They lived at Factory Square, Cookstown, and formerly of Gortagilly, Moneymore.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston 00073
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston 01913
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14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston The CWGC record Leading Stoker George Usher Johnston as the son of William and Annie Johnston of Cookstown, County Tyrone.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston A war memorial bell in the Council House, Derby commemorates the members of the crew of HMS Kenya and the adoption of the ship by the City of Derby. Leading Stoker Johnston is listed on the memorial.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston George Johnston is commemorated locally on Cookstown Cenotaph and on Molesworth Presbyterian Roll of Honour.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston Two of his sisters, Ivy and Sadie, joined the ATS in the Second World War.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston A few years later his body was re-interred at Trincomalee War Cemetery. The inscription on his grave reads: ‘I SHALL GO TO HIM, BUT HE SHALL NOT RETURN TO ME II SAMUEL XII.23’
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston Leading Stoker Johnston was buried in an iron casket on the shore close to where he died.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston Leading Stoker George Usher Johnston died as a result of a fatal accident during recreational bathing in Trincomalee harbour on 13th December 1943. He was 21 years old.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston On 9th December they arrived at Trincomalee in advance of carrying out local exercises with HMS Newcastle.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston In December 1943, HMS Kenya was deployed at Kilindini. On 4th December HMS Kenya took passage to Trincomalee, Sri Lanka, with HM Cruiser Newcastle.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston HMS Kenya was a Crown Colony-class cruiser of the Royal Navy. The ship was named after Kenya, a British possession at the time of the ship's construction. It was launched on 18 August 1939.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston Leading Stoker George Johnston served with the Royal Navy on board H.M.S. Kenya.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston Prior to enlisting, he had tried to join the Navy on a couple of occasions before his 18th birthday, but had been unsuccessful.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston He worked as a shop boy in Faulkner’s, Cookstown.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston Known family: William Johnston, Annie Johnston, George Usher Johnston (born 21st January 1923), Ivy Johnston, Sadie Johnston.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston George had five sisters and went to Oldtown School.
14/09/2019 Ld Stoker George Usher Johnston George Usher Johnston was the son of William and Annie Johnston. He was born on 21st January 1923 at ‘Orange’ Row, in Coagh Street, Cookstown.
14/09/2019 Cattle. Albert Turkington 01910
14/09/2019 1st Radio Samuel John Jackson Scott 01909
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson 01908
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson 01907
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson The CWGC record Merchant Seaman Lewis Johnson as the husband of Annie Johnson of Cookstown, County Tyrone.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson Seaman Johnston has no known grave and is commemorated on panel 87 of the Tower Hill Memorial in London.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson Six members of the crew survived the sinking and were rescued by the corvette HMS Burdock.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson SS River Lugar was carrying a load of iron ore from Pepel, West Africa and was bound for Liverpool as part of a sixty ship convoy, SL-78. River Lugar was torpedoed and sunk by the German U-boat U-69, three hundred miles south west of the Canary Islands. The captain, 34 crew and one passenger were lost.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson Merchant Seaman Lewis Johnston was killed on active service on 26th June 1941. He was 47 years old.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson Lewis Johnston was serving with the Merchant Navy on board SS River Lugar as a fireman and trimmer.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson Lewis Johnson was the husband of Annie Johnson.
14/09/2019 Merch Sea Lewis Johnson It is believed Lewis Johnston was born in 1894 in Sierra Leone.
10/09/2019 Fus Robert Gildea 01906
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness 01906
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness The CWGC record Fusilier William J Harkness as the son of William Harkness, and of Susan Harkness (nee Harrison). He is also recorded as the husband of Mary J Harkness of Coalisland, County Tyrone.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness Fusilier William Harkness is buried Catania War Cemetery, Sicily, Italy. His inscription reads: ASLEEP IN JESUS. EVER REMEMBERED BY HIS LOVING WIFE MARY.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness Fusilier Robert Gildea was killed in the same battle.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness Fusilier William Harkness was serving with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in Sicily when he was killed in action at the Battle of Lemon Bridge on 19th July 1943.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness The campaign in Sicily came to an end on 17th August when the two allied forces came together at Messina, but failed to cut off the retreating Axis lines.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness The Italians, who would shortly make peace with the Allies and re-enter the war on their side, offered little determined resistance but German opposition was vigorous and stubborn.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness On 10 July 1943, following the successful conclusion of the North African campaign in mid May, a combined allied force of 160,000 Commonwealth and American troops invaded Sicily as a prelude to the assault on mainland Italy.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness Fusilier William Harkness served with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in the war.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness By the time of 2nd World War, William was the husband of Mary J Harkness,
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness The family went on to live at Killycolp, a mile or so away.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness Known family: William Harkness, Susan Harkness, Robert Harkness (born 25th November 1912), Mary Harkness (born 29th July 1914), William J Harkness (born 5th October 1916).
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness William Harkness was born on 5th October 1916 in the Cookstown area.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness The 1911 census lists the Harkness family at house 1 in Loughry Demesne, Tullaghogue. William’s father was a gardener, presumably at Loughry. The only other person living and working in the Loughry Demesne was a cattle farmer.
10/09/2019 Fus William J Harkness William James Harkness was the second son of William Harkness and Susan Harkness. William Harkness and Susan Harrison were married on 17th February 1910 in the district of Cookstown.
09/09/2019 Sgt. Edward Brown 01867
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine 01867
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine 01905
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine The CWGC record Aircraftman 1st Class William Charles Irvine as the son of William and Ethel Irvine, of Tullyhogue, County Tyrone.
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine Aircraftman, 1st Class (Wireless Operator) William Charles (Billy) Irvine was buried in Thornaby-On-Tees Cemetery, Yorkshire, England. His inscription reads ‘PEACE, PERFECT PEACE’. All four crew members are buried together in this cemetery
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine The investigation into the incident and the Court of Inquiry returned verdicts of ‘cause obscure’. This would be the first of two Hudson crashes at Quarry Farm.
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine 700305 Sergeant Eric Morgan
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine 625299 Aircraftman 1st Class William Charles Irvine
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine 564819 Sergeant Dennis Robert Holbeche
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine 525413 Sergeant James Richard Butterworth
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine The crash site is believed to have been near to Quarry Farm, Ingleby Barwick. The crash caused the bomb load to explode which resulted in the deaths of all four airmen. The crewmen were:
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine On 11th June 1940 Aircraftman Irvine’s Hudson aircraft (serial no P5127) took off from Thornaby airfield near Middlesbrough at 3.20 in the morning with a crew of four. It left the ground normally and climbed away to around two hundred feet after which a turn to the right was made which increased in steepness until it stalled and flew into the ground.
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine Aircraftman 1st Class (Wireless Operator) William Charles (Billy) Irvine served with 220 Squadron of the Royal Air Force in World War Two.
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine Known family: William Irvine, Ethel Irvine, William Charles Irvine (born about 1921), Jack Irvine, Albert Irvine, Victor Irvine, Percy Irvine, Margaret Irvine, Violet Irvine.
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine Billy’s parents returned to Tullyhogue where they ran a cobblers shop and raised seven children.
09/09/2019 A/man William Charles Irvine William Charles (Billy) Irvine was the son of William and Ethel Victoria Irvine (nee Appelby) of Doorless, Tullyhogue. Billy mother Ethel came from Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire. His parents met there. His father was a Wold War One veteran and poet.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers 01904
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers 01903
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers The CWGC record Fusilier Alexander Jeffers as the son of Alexander and Annie Jeffers, of Coagh, County Tyrone.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers in commemorated locally on Coagh War Memorial and also commemorated on the family headstone at Old Eglish Cemetery, Ballinderry Bridge.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers The site of this cemetery was selected by the 5th Corps. The graves of men who had died in the fierce fighting on the Adriatic sector of the front in November-December 1943, and during the static period that followed were brought here. In addition, the cemetery contains the graves of a number of escaped prisoners of war who died while trying to reach the Allied lines. SANGRO RIVER WAR CEMETERY contains 2,617 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers Fusilier Alexander Jeffers is buried at Sangro River War Cemetery, Italy. His inscription reads: ‘HIS MEMORY IS WRITTEN IN TEARS OF LOVE IN THE HEARTS OF THOSE AT HOME’
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers ‘The plan was that the Skins were to capture San Salvo and the ridge on the left, while the Buffs were to capture the ridge to the right of the town. The first part of the attack was to take p1ace just before first light, and from first light onwards the two infantry battalions were to have the assistance of a regiment of tanks. The Buffs had a pretty clear run through on the right, but there was ding-dong fighting for San Salvo all day. Elements of the Skins got into the town quite early in the morning and the town was pretty well occupied by noon, but there was a lot of tidying up to be done and the Germans counter attacked a couple of times. The Germans had reacted very strongly to our advance, and rushed forward quite a number of tanks to support some already in the wood south of the town. There was a good deal of manoeuvring and tank fighting and the enemy was not finally on the run until about 1700 hours. The Skins did magnificently, but they lost some outstanding chaps. Hobo Crocker and Basil Hewitt were killed. We were pretty badly bombed twice during the day near my Command Post and more casualties were caused by this than in the actual battle. I mention this as it was so unusual, nowadays, for the Germans to bomb us, we are so completely masters of the air. The large number of casualties was probably due to this.’
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers The following is an account of the battle by Colonel Nelson Russell - THE SECOND BATTLE OF SAN SALVO — NOVEMBER 2nd-3rd.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers Fusilier Alexander Jeffers was killed during the battalion assault on the town of San Salvo, west of the River Trigno. The assault commenced at 0400hrs on 3rd November and by 1300hrs with the support of artillery and armour the battalion was firmly established. The battalion lost two officers (three others were wounded), with 15 other ranks killed and 45 wounded.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers Fusilier Alexander Jeffers was serving with the 6th Battalion of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers when he was killed in action on 3rd November 1943.
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers Known family: Alexander Jeffers, Annie Jeffers, Alexander Jeffers (born about 1922).
09/09/2019 Fus Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers Alexander (Sandy) Jeffers was the son of Alexander and Annie Jeffers. He was born about 1922.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell The CWGC record Sapper Robert John Cardwell as the son of Alexander and Mary Cardwell of Sandholes, County Tyrone.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Sapper Robert J Cardwell is commemorated locally on Cookstown War Memorial.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Sapper Robert J Cardwell has no known grave and is commemorated on the Alamein Memorial in Egypt.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell His brother Harry Cardwell served with the R.A.F. His brother William Cardwell served with the R.U.C. His sister Greta served with Queen Alexandra’s Royal Nursing Corps during the Second World War.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Sapper Robert John Cardwell was serving with No 2 Field Company of the Royal Engineers when he was killed in action on 9th December 1941 at El Alamein in Egypt.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Robert Cardwell served with the Royal Engineers in World War Two.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Prior to enlistment Robert Cardwell worked on the family farm at Gortfad Glebe, Sandholes.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Known family: Alexander Cardwell, Mary Cardwell, Robert John Cardwell (born about 1918), Francis Cardwell, Harry Cardwell, Joseph Cardwell, William Cardwell, Greta Cardwell.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Robert John Cardwell was born on 28th July 1917. The family lived at Gortfad, Sandholes, Cookstown.
06/09/2019 Sapper Robert John Cardwell Robert John Cardwell was the son of Alexander and Mary Cardwell.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Submitted by his family
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks From the Mid-Ulster Mail, date unknown:
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks The CWGC record Leading Aircraftsman William James Bleeks as the son of Robert and Elizabeth Anna Bleeks. He is also recorded as the husband of Mary Jane Bleeks of Portadown.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks William Bleeks is also commemorated on Portadown War Memorial.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks William James Bleeks commemorated locally on Stewartstown War Memorial and on Stewartstown Church of Ireland Roll Of Honour.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Leading Aircraftsman Bleeks is buried in Seagoe Cemetery, Portadown. His inscription reads ‘FOR EVER WITH THE LORD’
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Leading Aircraftsman Bleeks’ remains were returned home to Portadown.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Leading Aircraftsman William Bleeks died at 10:30 that night in the Military Hospital at Kirkwall in the Orkneys as the result of his injuries.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Leading Aircraftsman William Bleeks was on active service at RAF Skeabrae on the Orkney Islands when he was involved in a motor accident on 20th June 1942. He suffered severe head injuries, an extra dural haemorrhage and cerebral compression.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks William served with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. A 24 yr old William James Bleeks is registered in Kirkwall district of Orkney during 1942.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Prior to enlistment William worked in the Seagoe Hotel, Portadown.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Known family: William James Bleeks, Mary Jane Bleeks (nee McCann), Roberta May Bleeks, William James Bleeks.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks William became the husband of Mary Jane Bleeks (nee McCann). They lived in Portadown, County Armagh. They had two children.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks His uncle, Private William Thomas Bleeks, was killed in action on 17th October 1918 while serving in world War One.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks Known family: Robert Bleeks, Elizabeth Anna Bleeks, Margaret Bleeks (born 4th March 1916), William James Bleeks (born 28th May 1918).
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks William James Bleeks was born on 28th May 1918 in the Stewartstown area. The family lived at Hawthorn Cottage, Stewartstown, Co. Tyrone.
06/09/2019 Lead Airc William James Bleeks William James Bleeks was the eldest son of Robert and Elizabeth Anna Bleeks. Robert Bleeks and Elizabeth Anna Wright were married on 1st December 1914 in the district of Cookstown.
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan 01902
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan The CWGC record Guardsman Peter McCallan as the son of James and Brigid Ann McCallan of Pomeroy, County Tyrone.
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan Guardsman Peter McCallan is buried at St. Charles De Percy War Cemetery, Calvados, France. His inscription reads TO THOSE WHO STOP BY THIS GRAVE SAY ONE "HAIL MARY". HIS LOVING PARENTS.
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan Guardsman McCallan was killed in heavy fighting serving in the Guards Armoured Division between Caumont L’Evente and Vire, France, in the major allied trust to drive a wedge between the German 7th Army and Panzer Group West in the latter part of the Normandy Campaign.
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan Guardsman Peter McCallan was serving with the 3rd Battalion of the Irish Guards when he was killed in action on 11th August 1944 in France. He was 25 years old.
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan Possible family: James McCallan, Brigid Ann McCallan, Patrick McCallan (born 13th March 1915), Eileen McCallan (born 7th December 1917), Peter McCallan (born 25th May 1919).
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan Peter McCallan was born on 25th May 1919 in the Pomeroy area.
04/09/2019 Gman Peter McCallan Peter McCallan was the son of James and Brigid Ann McCallan. James McCallan and Brigid Quinn were married on 24th June 1914 in the district of Cookstown.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown 01901
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown The CWGC record Driver Frank McGeown as the son of Bernard and Sarah McGeown of Cookstown.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown Driver Frank McGeown is commemorated on Cookstown Cenotaph.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown Frank McGeown is buried in the family plot at Derryloran Roman Catholic Churchyard, Chapel Hill, Cookstown,
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown Driver Frank McGeown’s remains were returned home to Cookstown.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown Driver Frank McGeown was serving with the Royal Army Service Corps when died on 17th March 1945, aged 21 as a result of a road accident. While acting as a dispatch rider in England, his motorcycle collided with a lorry.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown Prior to active service Frank McGeown worked in Cookstown Pork Factory.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown The family lived at Loy Street, Cookstown.
04/09/2019 Driver Frank McGeown Frank McGeown was the son of Bernard and Sarah McGeown (nee Murphy). Frank was born about 1924 in Tyrone.
03/09/2019 Pte. John Percy Anderson 01900
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan 01899
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan In World War Two, Samuel Duncan served with the Royal Marines on board H.M.S. Repulse.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan The CWGC record Marine S G Duncan as the son of Samuel and Lucy Duncan of Stewartstown, County Tyrone.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan Marine Samuel Duncan is also commemorated locally on Cookstown Cenotaph.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan Marine Samuel George Duncan is buried in Kanchanaburi War Cemetery, Thailand. His inscription reads ‘PROUDLY HE SERVED, PROUDLY WE REMEMBER.’
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan Marine Samuel George Duncan died as a prisoner of war at Konyu Camp on 19th July 1943, aged 20.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan However, some of those survivors would later be captured at Malaya and the Dutch East Indies when both were surrendered by the British three months later. Marine Duncan was subsequently taken prisoner by the Japanese.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan In total, nearly 1,000 survivors of Repulse were rescued, including Marine Samuel George Duncan.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan HMS Prince of Wales, a new battleship, was sunk in the same action less than an hour later by the same torpedo bombers with a loss of 513 of her crew.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan HMS Repulse evaded 14 torpedoes but received five direct hits, sinking within twenty minutes.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan After no such invasion force was found, ‘Force Z’ turned south only to be attacked by 86 Japanese torpedo bombers on 10th December 1941.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan On 8th December 1941, shortly after the outbreak of war with Japan, HMS Repulse together with HMS Prince of Wales left Singapore in an attempt to intercept a Japanese invasion convoy heading for Malaya.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan The family lived at Soarn Cottage Stewartstown, County Tyrone.
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan Known family: Samuel Duncan, Lucy Duncan, Samuel George Duncan (born about 1923).
03/09/2019 Marine Samuel George Duncan Samuel George Duncan was son of Samuel and Lucy Duncan. He was born about 1923.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn 01898
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn 01866
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn The CWGC record Sergeant Alexander Henry Freeburn as the son of David and Margaret Freeburn of Cookstown.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Freeburn is commemorated locally on Cookstown Cenotaph and on Molesworth Presbyterian Roll of Honour.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Alexander Henry Freeburn is buried at Cookstown New Cemetery, Cemetery. His inscription reads ‘MANY LANCASTERS WERE MISSING ONE NAVIGATOR IS SAFE. TILL HE COME’
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Alexander Freeburn’s remains were returned home to Cookstown.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Freeburn’s body was later washed ashore at Snettisham, Norfolk on 19th June 1944. All the crew’s bodies were recovered.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn There is speculation that the aircraft was shot down by the Me410 of Fw. Johann Trenke, who claimed three aircraft over Northern Norfolk between 0305 and 0322 hours.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant George Henry KEMP (1592001) Air Gunner
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Flight Sergeant Thomas Lipsey GIBSON (984464) Pilot
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant John GALLAGHER (1823530) Air Gunner
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Alexander Henry FREEBURN (1670597) Navigator
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant James FRASER (935291) Flight Engineer
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant James Laird DUNBAR (1585541) Air Bomber
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Thomas Smith COMBE (1823102) Air Gunner
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Lawrence BUXTON (1614503) Wireless Op/Air Gunner
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn The aircraft is believed to have crashed in The Wash. All eight crew were lost.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn The aircraft was returning from operations against Duisburg and was seen to circle Waterbeach at 0303hrs. At 0309hrs the crew were instructed to jettison their bombs out at sea, but nothing more was heard of the aircraft after that time.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Sergeant Alex Freeburn was navigator on board a Lancaster bomber (Flight Serial No DS633) which took off from R.A.F. Waterbeach, near Cambridge.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn On the night of 21st/22nd May 1944, some 532 aircraft bombed Duisburg. Much damage was caused in the southern districts of the city with 350 buildings destroyed and 665 seriously damaged.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Alexander Henry Freeburn joined the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Alex flew with 514 Squadron during the Second World War.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Alexander Henry Freeburn was the nephew of Alexander Henry Freeburn, who died in World War I.
02/09/2019 Sgt. Alexander Henry Freeburn Alexander Henry Freeburn was the son of David and Margaret Freeburn. He was born about 1916.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman 01897
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman 01896
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman 01895
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman 01894
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman 01893
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Mr William H Freeman, of Church Street, Cookstown, who joined the Navy about eighteen months ago, is a member of the crew of HMS Exeter, which arrived home during the week from the south Atlantic, where she took part in the epic battle with the German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee. The cruiser, which suffered heavily in the action, was given a tremendous welcome on arrival in port.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman 01892
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman From the Mid Ulster Mail dated 12th February 1940:
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman The CWGC record Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman as the son of William and Mary Freeman. He is also recorded as the husband of Iris Elvina Freeman of Devonport, England.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman William Hugh Freeman is commemorated locally on Cookstown Cenotaph.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman is buried in Cupuccini Naval Cemetery, Malta. He is buried in a communal grave, probably due to the lack of space. His inscription reads ‘LEAD, KINDLY LIGHT AMID THE ENCIRCLING GLOOM, LEAD THOU ME ON R.I.P.’
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Blacksmith William (Billy) Freeman was in service on board HMS Leonian when he died on 7th February 1944, aged 23. The details of his death are unknown.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Blacksmith Freeman was home on leave on 2nd March 1940 for 28 days to visit his parents in Cookstown. It is recorded that there were very enthusiastic scenes in Cookstown when he stepped off the bus from Belfast at the Transport Board’s parcel depot in William Street where he was surrounded by a large crowd of well-wishers. That evening he was met by the members of Killymoon and Derryloran bands and paraded to his home carried on the shoulders of some of his neighbours. There was much loud cheering and Billy Freeman was heard to say ‘I hope I live to see Hitler scuttle himself too’.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman While serving on board HMS Exeter, Billy served with 14 men from Northern Ireland as well as men from the Republic of Ireland.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Seaman Billy Freeman was a member of the crew of one of the 4.7 inch guns that returned fire until the gun itself was disabled by a hit that killed and wounded many men, a piece of shrapnel cutting a hole in Billy’s cap and a slight cut to one hand.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman HMS Exeter played a heroic part in the battle with the pocket battleship Graf Spee off the River Plate on 13th December 1939. On the morning of 13th December, shortly after 6am, Billy was lying on deck when the order came for ‘action stations’. Distant guns flashed and soon HMS Exeter had received her first baptism of fire.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman William Hugh Freeman was the husband of Iris Elvina Freeman.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Billy Freeman joined the Royal Navy in the summer of 1938. He was a member of the crew of HMS Exeter, with the rank of Seaman.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman He was a keen motor cyclist and took part in the Cookstown 100 motorcycle race in 1938.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman Prior to the war, young William worked with his father as a blacksmith.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman The family lived for a time at Church Street, Cookstown, William (Billy) Freeman was well known in the Cookstown area because his father, William (Hughie) was a very popular blacksmith.
01/09/2019 Blacksmith William Hugh Freeman William Hugh Freeman was the son of William Hugh and Mary Freeman. He was born about 1921.
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