March 27. Last day of 36th Ulster Division. WW2 Naval airman cheats death. Roll of Honour

In 1943 aircraft carrier HMS Dasher (photo) caught fire and exploded. It was the Royal Navy’s second largest catastrophe in home waters. Three men from NI were lost. Sir Robert Babington DSC had his second second brush with death. As the ship was sinking, he was forced to jump overboard and swim to safety. In 1917 the battle for Beersheba began and the campaign for Gaza was underway. The 2nd Battalion The Royal Irish Fusiliers was awarded a Gaza battle honour which today is proudly shown on the Queen’s Colours of The Royal Irish Regiment. Today in 1918 was the last day that 36th (Ulster) Division fought as a cohesive unit. It was Day 7 of the Kaiserschlacht. John Caton from Muckamore died serving in the Royal Naval Division. George McCandless, a gunner from Coleraine, died in Burmah in 1944. In 1945 Francis Squires RNVR, from Limavady, serving with 854 Squadron on HMS Illustrious, died whilst launching attacks on airfields in Sakishma, Gunto, in the Pacific ocean.

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