January 11 – Roll of Honour

 

On 11/01/1917 Royal Navy seaplane carrier, HMS Ben-My-Chree (Woman of my heart, in Manx) is sunk by Turkish forces whilst supporting French troops on Kastellorizo off Turkey. All of the crew including Sam Ryan from Castlewellan were safely evacuated. Read Sam’s remarkable story in Survivors below. The Roll today includes a Cookstown man who came from the southernmost point of the South Island of New Zealand to serve and a Petty Officer from LIsburn who survived a sinking in the Mediterranean on this day in 1941.

Representing their comrades who died on this day

1918

+MITCHELL, David Crooks
Canterbury Regiment, 1st Btn. N.Z.E.F.Private. 56984. Died 11/01/1918. Son of David and Annie Mitchell. He was born in the Cookstown area on 28/03/1892. They lived in Dunmore, Lissan. They were a farming family. David and his oldest brother William emigrated to New Zealand. Prior to enlisting, David was a farm labourer. He was living in Marine, Clinton, Otago, at the very southern point of the South Island. Buttes New British Cemetery (NZ) Memorial, Polygon Wood, West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Cookstown WM. Claggan PCI RH.

1942

+ROBB, James
RN. Able Seaman. D/JX 191463. Died 11/01/1942. Age 38. HMS President III. Husband to Margaret Robb, Carrickfergus. Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 88

1944

+McILHAGGA, Samuel
Royal Artillery. Gunner. 1471106. Died 11/01/1944. Brookwood 1939 – 45 Memorial, Surrey

SURVIVORS AND VETERANS

JAMFREY, James
RN. Stoker 1st Class. K17091. Enrolled 12/12/1912. Re-engaged 26/09/1924. War service in Antrim, Pembroke, Colleen, Hannibal and Egmont. Served to 11/01/1928. Born Cookstown 17/09/1893. ADM 188/901/17091

JAMINSON,
Petty Officer. HMS Southampton. He survived the sinking of Southampton in the Mediterranean on 11/01/1941. News of his survival was reported in the Lisburn Standard (January 1941). Son of Mrs. Jaminson, Causeway End Road, Lisburn

MAGILL, William
RN. Stoker First Class. K19937. Enrolled 27/08/1908 for 12 years. War service in Berwick, Vivid I, Sutlej, Wellington, Acteon, and Boadicea. Served to 11/01/1929. Born Newtownards 17/01/1890. ADM 188/906/19937

RYAN, Samuel
RNAS. Chief Petty Officer II. Enrolled 09/09/1914 for hostilities. Pembroke III, President II, Ben MyChree. Transferred to RAF 31/03/1918. Born Co. Down 07/12/1886. Owner of the Station Garage, Newcastle.

In 1914 Earl Annesley from Castlewellan went with the RNAS Armoured Car Division, in his armoured motorcar in helping to check the advance of the Germans on Brussels and in the Defence of Mons and Antwerp. Sam who had acted as family chauffeur accompanied Lord Annesley on the retreat from Mons and at Antwerp. Annesley died in an aeroplane crash on 06/11/1914

Sam later served on the seaplane carrier Ben my Chree which prior to the war had been an Isle of Man tourist boat. He survived when it was sunk off the Gallipoli peninsular. After the war, he ran the post office in Castlewellan and taught motor-engineering classes in the local technical college.

Sam’s service is recorded on St John’s Parish Church, Newcastle RH. ADM 188/560/362

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