12 May. Start of final assault on Monte Cassino. Roll of Honour

Today is the anniversary of the beginning of the final successful attack involving 38 (Irish) Brigade on Monte Cassino in 1944 which opens the way for the liberation of Italy in WW2. John Gilmore from Killyleagh was lost in HMS Grove in 1942. He had been torpedoed twice and taken part in the Dunkirk evacuation. His younger brother was also in the RN. Local newspapers in 1915 report on major army events in Belfast and a march from Finner Camp via Strabane to Londonderry. Veterans today include George McCalister from Bangor, a former Chairman of the Burma Star Association’s Belfast Branch, who survived an air crash in the jungle.

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