The sons of two clergymen feature in today’s Roll. An Instonian was a medical student from Belfast serving as a surgeon probationer whose ship was lost in a storm in WW1. An Old Campbellian, the son of an Irish missionary to China, was a naval chaplain in WW2. Photo – Lone Pine Cemetery
Representing their comrades who died on this day
+REAINS, William John
RN. Chief Stoker. 169665. HMS Vivid. Died 12/01/1916. Aged 40. 22 years service. Enrolled RN when he was 18 years old. Served worldwide. Somali and Long Service Medals. Born Donaghadee 24/04/1875. Son of William John and Margaret (nee Stewart) Reains. Husband of Alice Maud Reains, Herbert St., Devonport. Baptised in Shore Street Presbyterian Church. Shore Street – PCI RH. Plymouth (Weston Mill) Cemetery.
+STORY, Louis Percival St John
RNVR. Surgeon Probationer. HMS Opal. Died 12/01/1918. Aged 22. Both the Opal, and the HMS Narborough ran aground during a snowstorm, on South Ronaldsay, Orkney. They were on a night patrol to hunt German warships suspected to be laying mines on the Scottish coast. By 5.30pm the weather had deteriorated to such an extreme degree that the destroyers were in danger of swamping and foundering and visibility was near zero. The Opal and Narborough were sent back to Scapa Flow. For the next four hours Opal regularly sent reports indicating her course and intention to return, but at 9.27pm, a garbled message stating “have run aground” was received, followed by silence. The weather was so atrocious that no vessels could be despatched until the following morning, and it was two days before the Opal was found, battered, broken and empty on the Clett of Crura. The single survivor, who had been on board the Narborough, reported that the ships had suddenly crashed headlong into the rocks, probably due to a navigation error by the Opal’s captain. Both wrecks were abandoned and broken up by the sea over the next few weeks taking the bodies of both crews, bar the single survivor, with them. Son of the Reverend Lawrence Parsons Story and Katharine Evelyn Story, Ulsterville Avenue, Belfast. Faculty of Medicine QUB, 1913 – 1915. Portsmouth Naval Memorial, Panel 31. RBAI WM. QUB WM. Christ Church, Durham St., Belfast WM
RN. AB. D-JX 197774. HMS Drake. Died 12/01/1945. Age 41. Husband to Matilda Lattimer, Belfast. Carnmoney cemetery. Sec. D.D. Grave 122
HAMILTON, Henry ( Harry)
10th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers. 10th Battalion (the Derrys). Private/Signaller.
He volunteered for active service in September 1914 (aged about 21 years); before enlisting he was a member of the Portstewart Company, Coleraine Battalion, North Derry Regiment, Ulster Volunteer Force. The Derrys trained at Finner Camp, County Donegal, and Seaford, Sussex, and arrived at the Western Front in October 1915. Harry served in France and was wounded during the Battle of the Somme (July 1916). He was taken as a prisoner of war by the Germans in 1918. He contracted pneumonia after being released at the end of the War and recovered fully. His parents, Mr. Robert and Mrs. Hetty Hamilton lived at Mullaghacall Cottages, Portstewart. Harry was the agent-in-charge of the L.M.S. Railway Station at Magilligan, County Londonderry, when he died on 12 January 1941, aged 48 years.
He is commemorated on Portstewart Presbyterian Church’s Roll of Honour & the Roll of Honour of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland.
KEOWN, Thomas George
RN. Chief Petty Officer Stoker. 305825. HMS Valiant. Jutland. Enrolled 08/01/1904 for 12 years. Re-engaged 13/01/1916. Served to 12/01/1926. Joined RFR 13/01/1926. War service in Valiant (13/01/1916 – 07/01/1918), Vivid and Endymion. Born Portadown 02/01/1886. ADM 188/498/305825
SILLS, Alfred Oswald
RNVR. Chaplain 1944-46. Jesus College, Cantab. Westcott House. Ordained 1940. Born 08/01/1917. Son of Rev. A. Sills (Church Missionary Society), China; (Guardian) Miss L. N. R. Jackson, Derryvolgie Avenue, Belfast. Died 1987. Campbell College 2166
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