December 19 – Roll of Honour

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The Roll of 18 servicemen today includes eight who died in HMS Neptune in WW2. Photo of the stunning French cemetery and Ossuary at Douaumont. These lads quite literally gave all they could give in defence of their country. On ne passe pas.

Representing their comrades who died on this day

1914

+BRANNIGAN, Peter
Highland Light Infantry, 1st Btn.Private. 10738. Died 19/12/1914. From Glenbeg, Galbally, Pomeroy, County Tyrone. Le Touret Memorial, Pas de Calais, France

1915

+DEVLIN, John

Royal Field Artillery, 53rd Brigade, C Battery. Gunner. 95897. Died 19/12/1915. Age 20. Born in Ballinderry, County Londonderry. Prior to the outbreak of war he was working in Stockton-on-Tees, England. At the age of 19 he volunteered and went to the Western Front in May 1915 He had written a letter home prior to Christmas 1915 saying that he hoped to get leave for a week in the New Year of 1916, but his family received no more news until the report of his death. Ypres Reservoir Cemetery, Ypres (Ieper), West-Vlaanderen. Coagh WM

1917

+BOYD, Christopher
Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, 10th Btn. Private. 27382. MM. Died 19/12/1917. Age 21. Born in Glasgow about 1897. By 1901 he was living with his grandparents, Christy and Sarah Jane Boyd, in Carricknakielt, Maghera. He went to school there and was a member of Knockloughrim Presbyterian congregation. He enlisted in Coleraine. He was awarded the Military Medal (M.M.). Private Christy Boyd died of wounds in Manchester General Hospital a week before Christmas. Mullagh Old Graveyard, Maghera, Co Londonderry. Castledawson WW1 Memorial

1941

+COLE, Albert Parr
RN. Petty Officer Stoker. D/KX 82617. HMS Stanley. Died 19/12/1941. Age 27. Enlisted 1932. Son of Albert Charles and Margaret Frances Cole, Primrose Ave, Bangor. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 06/02/1942). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 51

+CRAIG, Thomas Henry
RN. Able Seaman. D/JX 136197. HM Submarine Perseus. Died 19/12/1941. Age 26. HMS Perseus (Lt Cdr E C D Nicolay), 6th December 1941, Central Mediterranean, 7 miles north of Zante island, west coast of Greece in Ionian Sea – hit an Italian mine off the Greek island of Kefalonia. Sailed from Malta on 26th November for Alexandria with orders to patrol west of Greece on passage; 58 crew lost, one rating got to the surface and swam 5 miles ashore to Cephalonia before spending 18 months being sheltered by the Greeks (Ionian Sea patrol). Son of Henry John and Kate Craig, Culmore, Co. Londonderry. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 46

+HARTLEY, John
RN. Able Seaman. D/JX 155925. Date of Death:19/12/1941. Age: 20. HMS Stanley. John R Hartley was the son of Samuel and Sarah Hartley. He was born about 1921. ‘Jack’ joined the Royal Navy prior to WW 2 as a cadet seaman and served with a number of Royal Navy ships prior to his final posting on the destroyer HMS Stanley. On 14/12/1941, HMS Stanley was deployed on convoy escort duty. At approximately 04:15 hours on 19/12/1941, HMS Stanley (I73) was hit by two of three torpedoes, exploded and immediately sank about 330 miles west of Portugal. HMS Stanley sank with the loss of all but 25 of her crew. Son of Samuel and Sarah Hartley, Moneymore. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 47. Desertlyn Parish Church WM

+HYLAND, James
Stoker 1st. Class . D/KX 89680. Died 19/12/1941. Age 24. HMS Thracian. Son of James and Maria Hyland, Belfast. Plymouth Naval Memorial

+PROES, Geoffrey Ernest Sullivan
Royal Artillery. Major. 23683. Died Between 19/12/1941 and 25/12/1941. Aged 39. Son of Colonel E. S. Proes and Mrs. E. Proes; husband to Nancy M. Proes, of Omagh, Co. Tyrone. Sai Wan Memorial, China, (including Hong Kong)

1941                                                  HMS NEPTUNE
Neptune was in pursuit of an Italian convoy north of Tripoli, Libya on 19/12/1941. The ship struck a mine and while trying to escape a minefield hit two more. A fourth mine exploded. Neptune turned over and sank. Only one man survived of the crew of 764.

+DONALDSON, James Nolan
RN. Able Seaman. D/JX 146755. Date of Death:19/12/1941. Age:22. HMS Neptune. He had eight years service in the RN in which his father served for 24 years. Son of Jonathan and Anna Donaldson, Paris St., Shankill Rd., Belfast. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 09/01/1942). (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 26//06/1942). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 46

+HAMILTON, Albert
RN. Able Seaman. D/SSX 26639. Date of Death: 19/12/1941. Age: 34. HMS Neptune. Neptune was in pursuit of an Italian convoy north of Tripoli, Libya on 19/12/1941. Son of Annie Hamilton, Portadown. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 47. St Mark’s Parish Church, Portadown WM

+HARRISON, Robert Lyttle
RM. Marine. PLY/X 3783. Died 19/12/1941. Age:19. HMS Neptune. His father served 18 years in the RN and was in submarines throughout WW1. Son of David and Florence Irene Harrison, Bangor. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 26//06/1942). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 59

+HILL, James
RN. Stoker 2nd Class. D/SKX 39, Died 19/12/1941. Age 19. HMS Neptune. Son of William and Annie Hill, Larne. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 54

+LOGUE, William Robert John
RN. Able Seaman. D/SSX 16115. HMS Neptune. Died 19/12/1941. Age 25. Mediterranean. Son of William John and Anna Albertha Logue, Limavady. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 47

+SERGISON, Andrew Hogan Wilson
RM. Marine. PLY/X 1726. Died 19/12/1941. Age 22. HMS Neptune. Joined the Royal Marines when he was 17 years old, having been a member of the Sea Cadets. He had been married in April 1940 and went to sea three days later, since then his wife had not seen him. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 26//06/1942). Son of Mrs Ball, Oldpark Ave., Belfast. Husband to Mrs Margaret Ferguson, Royal Ave., Belfast. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 59

+PATTERSON, John
RM. Marine.PLY/X 100601. Died 19/12/1941. Age 20. HMS Neptune. Reported missing in December 1941. Two years service. His father served throughout WW1 with the Inniskilling Fusiliers. Son of Mr and Mrs Hawthorn Patterson, Lavinia St., Belfast. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 03//07/1942). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 59

+WYLIE, Samuel
RN. Boy 1st Class. D/JX 184582. HMS Neptune. 19/12/1941. Age 17. Son of Samuel and Minnie Wylie, Belfast. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 50
1941

+HARTLEY, John
RN. Able Seaman. D/JX 155925. Date of Death:19/12/1941. Age: 20. HMS Stanley. John R Hartley was the son of Samuel and Sarah Hartley. He was born about 1921. ‘Jack’ joined the Royal Navy prior to World War 2 as a cadet seaman and served with a number of Royal Navy ships prior to his final posting on the destroyer HMS Stanley. On 14/12/1941, HMS Stanley was deployed on convoy escort duty. At approximately 04:15 hours on the 19/12/1941, HMS Stanley (I73) was hit by two of three torpedoes, exploded and immediately sank about 330 miles west of Portugal. HMS Stanley sank with the loss of all but 25 of her crew. Son of Samuel and Sarah Hartley, Moneymore. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 47

1943

+POLLAND, Joseph Norman
RAFVFR. Sergeant. 1485923. Died 19/12/1943. Aged 31. 138 Sqdn. Died while taking part in a container dropping training exercise over Henlow Airfield, Bedfordshire. He was a bomb aimer on board Handley Page Halifax BB364 NF-R with RAF 138 (Special Duties) Squadron. The crew took off from RAF Tempsford, Bedfordshire on a training exercise. The mission involved dropping containers over RAF Henlow, Bedfordshire from around 400 feet. At 1925hrs, after 1 hour 5 minutes in the air, the Mark II bomber collided with a tall factory chimney at Arlesey Brickworks and came down 1 mile south-east of the target area. The collision happened at around 280 feet as the plane circled although the pilot was aware of the chimneys. The plane caught fire killing all those on board. He was the son of Samuel Polland and Sara Polland of 23 Evolina Street, Belfast.

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