Killyleagh War Memorial, WW2  Left


Killyleagh War Memorial, WW2 Left

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All information is provided in good faith but, on occasions errors may occur. Should this be the case, if new information can be verified please supply it to the author and corrections will then be made.

Able Seaman John Anderson (D/JX 148096) sailed in HMS Glorious on the night of its infamous sinking. He died on board the aircraft carrier on 8th June 1940 aged 18 years old. The loss of the HMS Glorious remains one of the most devastating and controversial Allied losses in the Second
World War.
The Down Recorder reported on 16th November 1941, “John Anderson, of Killyleagh, one of the crew of HMS. Glorious, is now reported presumed dead. He joined the Navy five years ago.” Twenty men from Northern Ireland were lost in Glorious.
Credited to

Robert Victor Berner. Leading Writer D/MX60040 Royal Navy on HMS Hood. Born 23 May 1919 at Tullyveery, Killyleagh, County Down to Robert Victor and Catherine Berner, of Killyleagh. Died at sea 24 May 1941 aged 22 years. He served on HMS Hood, one of the Royal Navy’s older battleships, a veteran of World War One. Berner died on 24th May 1941, the day after his 22nd birthday. The infamous Nazi vessel, the Bismarck sank the British battleship. HMS Hood and HMS Prince of Wales intercepted German battleships, Bismarck and Prince Eugen. A battle ensued in the Denmark Strait between Greenland and Iceland beginning at 0535hrs. HMS Hood opened fire at 0553hrs and within minutes, the battle was over. The Bismarck returned fire on HMS Hood and the Royal Navy ship exploded. Only three men from a crew of 1,418 survived. Shells also hit HMS Prince of Wales killing everyone on the bridge apart from the captain. The Bismarck escaped unscathed.
Commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

Patrick Doyle. Unable to find the correct record for this person listed with the CWGC

William Alexander Dempster. Leading Stoker C/JX79089 Royal Navy on H.M.S. Cleopatra. Born 16 January 1910 at Ballymacarron, Killyleagh to Frederick James Dempster and Eliza Jane Dempster. 1911 residing with his parents at 1 Pawle Island, Killyleagh, County Down. Died 15 February 1942 aged 32 years as the result of a direct hit on the ship by a 500kg bomb.
At rest in Capuccini Naval Cemetery, Malta Plot F, Grave 89.

James Alexander Fee. Fireman 142504, Merchant Navy on S.S. Castlehill (Belfast) Born1912 to Robert Fee and Sarah, nee Thistlethwaite of Shore Street, Killyleagh. Died at sea 2 March 1941 aged 29 years. Commemorated on Tower Hill Memorial, London.

John Gilmore. Able Seaman C/SSX 18758 Royal Navy on HMS Grove. (L77) Born 16 January 1919 to Mr. and Mrs. Terence Gilmore, of Maymore Toye, County Down, Northern Ireland. Died at sea 12 June 1942 aged 23 years as the result of the sinking by U Boat 77. Commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial, Kent. His brother Edward, also served in the RN.
Following extract credited to At 0537hours on 12 June 1942 HMS Grove (Lt.Cdr. James Wolferstan Rylands, RN) was hit by two torpedoes from U-77 and sunk north of Sollum, Egypt in position 32º05'N, 25º30'E. Two officers and 108 ratings were lost, there were 60 survivors. The destroyer had been part of the eastern convoy MW-11 under Rear Admiral P.J. Vian during Operation Vigorous, a supply convoy to Malta.

John Eyre Gisborne Gordon. Captain 71018 Royal Artillery. Born 17 May 1917 to Sir Eyre Gordon, C.S.I., C.I.E. and Lady Gordon (nee Lenox Napier), of Newcastle, County Down, Northern Ireland. Died 1 April 1941 aged 23 years. The Gordon family lived first at Florida Manor, Killinchy, Co. Down and then Delamont House, Killyleagh, Co. Down. The couple also had a daughter Patricia Lilias Gordon. While in the Royal Artillery, John received a promotion to 2nd Lieutenant on 28th January 1937. He died on war service administration duties on 1st April 1941 aged 23 years old. According to his sister, John suffered extensive wounds in the early days of the war. Medics had to amputate his leg and hospital staff could not stop the bleeding.
After his death, documentation shows that Grindlay and Company Ltd. in Llandudno, attorney to Sir Eyre Gordon handled affairs. John left an estate of £2024, 16s, 2d, worth around £95,000 today.
At rest in Khartoum War Cemetery, Sudan.

Francis Hannity. Born 1909 at Killyleagh to Francis and Anna Elizabeth Moore Hannity, nee White of (1911 Irish Census) 2 Frederick Street, Killyleagh. There is a WW1 medal card for a Francis Hannity who was Private 11157 Royal Irish Rifles, transferred to the Labour Corps as Private 231209. He may have joined the local Home Guard or enlisted into the army and was put on Home duties. Not found him as World War two causality.

Albert Samuel Hugh Jess. Sergeant Wireless Operator-Air Gunner 635446. 106 Squadron, Royal Air Force. Son of James and Ellen Henderson Jess, of Killyleagh. Shot down over Germany on air operations 13 March 1941 aged 19 years. During the war, Jess flew with Royal Air Force 102 Squadron. At his time of death, he was a wireless operator/air gunner on board Armstrong Whitworth Whitley bomber T4273 DY-O. This plane had crash-landed at RAF Topcliffe on 21st December 1940 while returning from a raid on Turin. On this occasion, the pilot was Sergeant Robert Aubrey Doherty from Dundonald, Co. Down, a former pupil at Regent House Grammar School, Newtownards, Co. Down.
Whitley T4273 took off from RAF Topcliffe on the night of 12th-13th March 1941. It failed to return from the mission over Germany. Anti-aircraft flak guns downed the bomber over Kampstrasse, Hamburg killing the crew of five.
At rest in Hamburg Cemetery, Germany.

Charles Kelly. Able Seaman D/SSX17785 Royal Navy on HMS Matabele (F26). Born 21 February 1918 at Killyleagh. Died at sea 17 January 1942 aged 23 years. Commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.
The sinking. In January 1942 she formed the screen, with Somali, for the cruiser Trinidad on Convoy PQ 8 from Iceland to Murmansk. The convoy departed on 11 January, and came under torpedo attack on 16 January. On 17 January Matabele was hit by a torpedo from the German submarine U-454 and sank almost immediately. Only two out her complement of 238 survived. Many who were able to leave the stricken ship succumbed in the ice-cold water before rescue was possible. The two survivors were picked up by the minesweeper Harrier.

Falklands 1982
James Hughes. Petty Officer Class 2 Mechanic. Merchant Navy on S.S. Atlantic Conveyor (Liverpool) (Third Aircraft Carrier). Son of Ena. He died along with many others on the 25 May 1982 when the ship was hit by two Argentine air-launched AM39 Exocet missiles into C Deck, he was aged 46 years. The ship was the first British merchant vessel lost at sea to enemy fire since World War II. He is commemorated on a family grave in Killyleagh Churchyard.

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