This week in 1941 the mighty Avro Lancaster Bomber first flew. Cost approx £50,000, 7377 built, 3249 lost in action,156,000 sorties, 618,378 tonnes of bombs dropped, operated by approx 50 squadrons and just two left flying today. Today’s Roll – Navy doctor who helped the development of NI hospitals – Cullybackey gunner at El Alamein. Lisburn Inniskilling in a Japanese POW camp – and more.
Representing their comrades who died on this day
Connaught Rangers, 6th Btn. Private. 4583. MiD. Died 10/01/1918. Aged 21. Youngest son of James and Mary Mayne. They were a farming family who lived in Tullywiggan, Tullaghoge. Joseph was working as a barman in Belfast at the outbreak of the First World War. Private Joseph Mayne, who was in charge of the Lewis-gun, was wounded and collapsed across his gun. He was taken to No. 55 Casualty Clearing Station at Tincourt. He died of his wounds a short time later that day. Son of James and Mary Mayne, of Ardcumber, Cookstown, Co. Tyrone. Tincourt New British Cemetery, Somme, France. Cookstown WM
RN. CPO. D/J 102836. Died 10/01/1941. Age 36. HMS Illustrious. 18 years service. Elder son of John and Margaret Harrison, Deacon St., Belfast. Widow in England. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 25/01/1941). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 45
+SMYTH, William James Wilson
RN. AB. D/SSX 21645. Died 10/01/1941. Age 21. HMS Valiant. Son of Mr Francis and Mrs Mary J Smyth, Main St., Whiteabbey. Brothers in Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, RUR and Merchant Navy. (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 25/01/1941). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 48
+DELANEY, Thomas Alfred
RAFVR. Flight Sergeant (Wireless operator/air gunner.) Died 10/01/1942.12 Squadron. Only son of James Patrick Delaney and Mary Delaney of 35 Summerfield Street, Ballymena. Ballymena Cemetery. 12 Squadron, was part of Bomber Command. During the winter of 1942 12 Squadron was re-equipped with Wellington Bombers. Winter months were spent in training from their base ar RAF Binbrook, Lincolnshire.
On 10/01/1942, Vickers Wellington Mark II W5611 took off bound for Wilhelmshaven, Germany. It left the airfield at RAF Binbrook, Lincolnshire but crashed soon after at 2330hrs. Reports suggest the port engine failed and caught fire causing a rapid loss of height. The plane crashed one mile east of the village of Brumby and two injured survivors were taken to Scunthorpe Hospital. Flight Sergeant Delaney died in the incident along with Flight Sergeant CF O’Connell from New Zealand, Sergeant DA Laing, and Flight Sergeant EA Parsons from Canada. The injured men were Pilot Officer HA Stickings and Sergeant CC McAllister. Thomas was the only son of James Patrick Delaney and Mary Delaney of 35 Summerfield Street, Ballymena. Ballymena New Cemetery.
RN. Leading Seaman. D/JX 186043. Died 10/01/1943. Age 28. HMS President III. Three years’ service. Wounded at Dunkirk. Mother resident of Lorne St., Lisburn Rd., Belfast. Husband to Florence Malcolm, Runnymede Parade, Belfast. Son of William George and Esther Malcolm, Belfast, (Belfast Weekly Telegraph 26/02/1943). Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 78
Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, 1st Btn. Fusilier. 6979364. Died 10/01/1943 as a prisoner of war of the Japanese. Aged 20. Son of John and Martha Phillips, of Lisburn. Taukkyan War Cemetery, Myanmar. Magheragall Parish WM
+FOSTER, John McIlroy
Royal Artillery. 94 H.A.A. Regt. 261 Bty. Gunner. 1486961. Died 10/01/1944. Age: 36. 261 Battery saw action at El Alamein and would have been in North Africa when John was killed. Foster-son of Mary Kernohan, of Ballymena. Memorial, Craigs C of I Churchyard, Cullybackey, Co. Antrim
ALLEN, Frederick Martin Brice
RN & RNVR. Surgeon – Lieutenant. As a Surgeon Probationer he served with the Grand Fleet at Scapa Floe 1917 in HMS Miranda. Following the founding of the Ulster Division of the RNVR, he rejoined and for some years was an active member of the Division.
Born.10 June 1898. Died.10 January 1972
MB BCh BAO Belf(1920) MD(1923) MRCP(1925) FRCP(1939)
Fred Allen was born at Belfast, the son of William James Allen, merchant, and Annie Holden, and educated at Queen’s University. In 1917, while still a student, he interrupted his studies to serve as a surgeon-probationer in the Royal Navy. At the end of the first world war he returned to Queen’s University and graduated MB BCh BAO in 1920, proceeding MD in 1923, and specializing in paediatrics. He was elected a Fellow of the College in 1939, and was appointed to the Nuffield Chair of Child Health at Queen’s University in 1948. He was paediatrician to the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children from 1924, and physician in charge of infants to the Royal Maternity Hospital, Belfast, from 1927 until his retirement in 1963, when he also retired from the Chair of child health at the University.
Between 1939 and the end of the second world war he undertook important administrative duties in connection with the organization of medical manpower in the Province, was hospitals officer to the Ministry of Public Security with responsibility for hospital arrangements in connection with Civil Defence, and involved in planning work for the coming National Health Service. He was one of the first members of the Northern Ireland Hospital Authority, a member of the Ministry of Health Advisory Committee on Child Guidance and Speech Therapy and of the Nuffield Regional Council and Medical Planning Committee. He served on the NI Tuberculosis Authority and for years was an active member of the Association of Physicians of Great Britain and Ireland, and of the British Paediatric Association. He was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine and a former President of the Ulster Medical Association.
One of Fred Allen’s most notable qualities was his burning zeal to see a durable image of paediatrics established in Ulster, and in this he succeeded. He had a gift for friendship, and great fortitude and resilience in adversity. Like many strong personalities he had his prejudices or preconceived ideas, for which he was ever willing to strive, and at times some of his colleagues may have chafed under his obduracy. But with his patients — the children — he was never so and was, indeed, greatly loved by them. His crowded out-patient clinics testified to the value the doctors in Ulster put on his opinions. In 1963, the year of his retirement, he won the Dawson Williams prize. Among many publications was his book Aids to the Diagnosis and Treatment of Diseases in Children.
In 1929 he married Anne Evelyn Maud Calvert, daughter of James Calvert whose son, E.G.B. Calvert, was also elected a Fellow of the College. His wife, Eve, supported him as loyally throughout his active life as she did in his declining years; they were fortunate to have 43 years of great happiness together. He retired to live at Cultra, in a lovely house overlooking Belfast Lough. At home, surrounded by his pictures and treasures, he pursued his main interests outside medicine; his garden, his reading, and entertaining friends. Fred and his wife were perfect hosts. There was a gay spontaneity about their entertaining and all who had the pleasure of joining them on these occasions will remember their generous and elegant hospitality. They had no children.
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