April 25. Northern Ireland’s Anzacs. Roll of Honour.

Six men from NI died on this day in Gallipoli in 1915 – Alexander Martin from Magheragall, Lisburn, was serving with the Auckland Rifles. William Munro from Magherafelt served with the Australian infantry, Sam and William Smyth from Londonderry, John Thompson from Ballymoney and George Dunlop from Holywood were in the Royal Dublin Fusiliers. The Lancashire Fusiliers won six VC’s before breakfast. In 1940 Royal Inniskilling Fusilier Robert MacMillan, of Coleraine, died on the defensive fallback to Dunkirk. Wing Commander Mervyn Stanley, ex 502 Sqdn and QUB died in 1942. At the time of his death his elder brother Major V.E.M.C. Stanley was a Prisoner of War. In 1943 Hugh Blair from Ballymoney, and James Clarke from Lisburn fell with the Royal Irish Fusiliers in Tunisia. Forde Leathley MC, the son of the Rector of Trillick, County Tyrone, was a First World War flying ace credited with eight aerial victories. He also received an emergency commission in WW2, in the King’s Royal Rifle Corps. Today is the birthday of another veteran and Cambridge graduate, RN. Lieut – Com John McCaughey who was a Founder Member of English RFC, Toronto.

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