On this day in 1944, 30 RAF Lancasters sink the German battleship Tirpitz near Tromsø, Norway. In 1942 three RN men died, one had been a member of HMS Caroline’s football team. In WW1 a Ballynahinch scout leader died serving with the Royal Flying Corps.
Representing their comrades who died on this day
RN. ERA III. M17317. HMS Opal. Died 12/11/1918. Enrolled 01/12/1915 for hostilities. Victory and Diligence (Opal 29/03/1916 – 12/01/1918). Born Belfast 08/11/1890. ADM 188/1052/17317
Canadian Infantry, 7th Btn. Private. 437103. Died 12/11/1917. He was severely wounded by a shell. He died two days later. Age 22. Born Cookstown 26/03/1895. Son of William John and Mary Hegan. His father was a farmer and they lived in Ballysudden, Tullyhogue. James Hegan emigrated to Canada where he worked as a farmer. He enlisted in Edmonton when he was 20 years old. Dozinghem Military Cemetery, Poperinghe, West-Vlaanderen, Belgum. Sandholes PCI RH
+SCOTT, David Harden
Royal Flying Corps, 65th Squadron. Lieutenant. MC. Died 12/11/1917. Age 21. Educated at Bangor Grammar School. On 08/09/1914 he joined the QUB Training Corps. Prior to the outbreak of the Great War he was employed by the County Down Weaving Co Ltd which he entered from the Trade Preparatory School of the Municipal Technical Institute. Harden Scott joined the Army in October 1914 and shortly afterward received his commission in the16th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles (County Down Pioneers). For a time he served with the Army Cyclist Corps before being transferred to the Royal Flying Corps. Lieutenant Scott was awarded the Military Cross on 28/08/1916 and the citation stated that, along with Second Lieutenant Herbert H Turk as pilot, he attacked seven hostile machines flying in formation and brought down one as a wreck. When turning to engage another machine the rudder controls were shot away and his machine went into a spinning nose-dive. After falling 5,000 feet the pilot partially regained control and, although the machine kept on turning, he managed to land safely. Lieutenant Scott was injured and required a lengthy period of convalescence; Second Lieutenant Turk was subsequently killed in action on 03/11/1916. Harden received his Military Cross from the King on 29/08/1917 and on 27/10/1917 he returned to France as a scout pilot. Two weeks later, on 12/11/1917, he was killed in action whilst on patrol over the German lines. His machine was brought down by a direct hit from an enemy anti-aircraft gun. Major Cunningham described it as ‘cruel luck for it is only once in many thousand or even a million times that a direct hit is obtained’. Memorial services were held in four Ballynahinch churches – Presbyterian, Church of Ireland, Congregational and Methodist. Harden Scott presented a gold medal to Ballynahinch Boy Scout Troop to be used as a competition trophy. Born on 24/11/1895 in Abbey Street, Bangor and he was the eldest son of Matthew and Elizabeth Craig Scott (nee Lemon). Matthew Scott was the railway station-master in Bangor. At the time of Harden’s death, the Scott family was living at 43 Railway Street, Ballynahinch where Matthew Scott was the station-master. Post du Hem Military Cemetery, La Gorgue Nord France. Lieutenant David Harden Scott is commemorated in Bangor Masonic Lodge No. 746 and as J H Scott in both First Bangor Presbyterian Church WM and Bangor Grammar School WM.
Royal Garrison Artillery,237th Siege Bty.Gunner. 281545. Died 12/11/1917. Husband to Mary Thompson, of Killymoon St., Cookstown. Noeux-Les-Mines Communal Cemetery Extension, Pas de Calais, France. Cookstown WM.
RNAS. CI. F36250. Died 12/11/1918 at RNAS Oldbury. Enrolled 25/08/1917 for hostilities. President II (Crystal Palace and Icarus), Pembroke II, and President II(Oldbury). Formerly RNVR Y21783. Born Belfast 15/04/1894. ADM 188/628/36250
+LEWIS, Charles Albert
RN. Able Seaman. D/JX 208594. Date of Death:12/11/1942. Age: 30. H.M.S. Hecla. Son of Edith Lewis; husband to Elizabeth Lewis, Newry. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 65
HMS Caroline. RNVR. AB. P/UD/X 697. Died 12/11/1942. Age 31. HMS Marne. Member of HMS Caroline’s soccer team. Previously employed at Wm Ewart’s, Crumlin Rd., Belfast. Son of Alexander Thornton, and of Annie Thornton, Belfast.(Belfast Weekly Telegraph 27/11/1942). Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Panel 71.
RN. AB. D/JX 253780. Died 12/11/1942. HMS Hecla. Reported missing after ship sank in operations off North African coast. Two years’ service. Son of Mrs C Veighey, Hutchinson St., Belfast. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 12/02/1943). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 66
+GIBSON, Robert Trevor
RAFVR. Sergeant. 1036711. Died 12/11/1943. Aged 21. He was Flight Engineer on Handley Page Halifax BB326 with No. 1659 Heavy Conversion Unit. He died when the plane came down after taking off from RAF Halfpenny Green, Worcestershire at 1315hrs.Five others died in the incident, one survived. The impact threw Pilot Officer TM Murdock (J27606) clear of the burning wreckage and he was the only survivor. Formerley resident at University St., Belfast. Belfast CVity Cemetery, Glenalina.
Royal Ulster Rifles, London Irish Rifles, 2nd Bn. Rifleman. 7019574. Died 21/10/1944. Aged 21. Son of Samuel and Elizabeth Blair, of Larne. Santerno Valley War Cemetery, Italy
Royal Ulster Rifles, London Irish Rifles, 2nd Bn. Rifleman. 7046535. Died 21/10/1944. Aged 22. Son of John and Sarah Warden, of Newtownards. Arezzo War Cemetery, Italy
Royal Naval Reserve. Gunner. He volunteered for active service in the winter of 1915 (aged about 24 years), and ships served on included HMS Albemarle, a battle cruiser. Before the war he was a fisherman. His father, Robert (fisherman), and step-mother, Lizzie, lived at Teresa Terrace (Heathmount), Portstewart. Mark was living at Upper Heathmount when he died on 12/11/1959. He was buried in Agherton Cemetery. Agherton Parish Church RH
PATTON, William Francis
Royal Irish Rifles. Second Lieutenant. CBE. QC. Born 12/11/1897 Educated at RBAI. He joined QUB Training Corps in October 1914 and left in January 1916 when he enlisted in the 20th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles. In October 1917, he was attached to the 1st King George’s Own Gurkha Rifles (The Maluan Regiment), an appointment which he relinquished on 20/04/1919. He served in India and the Middle East and was reported “missing and presumed killed on 10/04/1918”. However, on April 24, the Northern Whig reported that William Francis Patton had been taken prisoner. After the war he pursued a career in the legal profession, becoming a Queen’s Counsellor. CBE,1974, for his service to the legal system in Northern Ireland.
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