Maiden City Great War Roll of Honour Part 37

editorial image

Local historian Trevor Temple chronicles the individuals associated with Londonderry who lost their lives in WWI.

McCauley, Private John, 3724

John McCauley, ‘C’ Company, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, died on July 22, 1915.

Aged 22, he was the son of Cornelius and Annie McCauley, 32, Donegal Street, Rosemount, and brother of Thomas McCauley, 3, Glen Bank Terrace, Derry. His remains are interred in Chocques Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France, and his name is commemorated on the Diamond War Memorial.

Sir Frank Fox, author of the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers in the World War, describes the actions of the 2nd Inniskillings in the days leading up to the death of Private McCauley: ‘...The next move was to the Givenchy sector, and on July 13 to Bethune as Brigade in Divisional Reserve.

‘On July 21 the Battalion encountered one of the chance misfortunes of the War, two enemy shells finding its billets: 15 O.R.s were killed, 2 officers and 59 O.R.s wounded.’

John McCauley’s mother received a letter from the Reverend A.E. MacCabe, C.F., Catholic Chaplain, stating: ‘On the 22nd of July [1915] the billets in which the battalion was quartered were shelled, and your son was badly wounded.

‘I was quite close to the spot, and was able to give absolution and anoint all the Catholics – your son amongst the number.

‘He was quite conscious, and he was one of those whose wounds I bound up myself.

‘All the time I was doing so he was praying aloud. He was, of course, taken off to hospital at once.

‘On looking up my register I find that your son had a few days before been to Confession and Holy Communion, so that he was well prepared for death.

‘I am sure the news must have been a great blow to you, but you will be consoled to know that he died as a brave soldier and a fervent Catholic.’

At time of death John McCauley had two brothers serving with the colours – Private Thomas McCauley, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, and Private Joseph McCauley, 3rd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers.

Private John McCauley, a reserve man, was called up at the beginning of the war, and had been at the Front since October 1914. He was twice wounded, and had some very narrow escapes.

McLaughlin, Private Thomas, 18136

Thomas McLaughlin, 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was born at Skerry, County Antrim, enlisted at Londonderry, and died on July 22, 1915.

Aged 36, he was the son of John and Mary Ann McLaughlin, and husband of Mrs Annie McLaughlin, 24, Orchard Row, Londonderry.

His name is commemorated on the Diamond War Memorial, and his remains are interred in Hinges Military Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France.

Hinges is a village and commune in the Pas-de-Calais, some five kilometres north-west of Bethune.

The Military Cemetery is on the southern side of the village adjoining the Communal Cemetery.

Thomas McLaughlin and two brothers volunteered in November 1914, and Thomas went to the Front a couple of months before his death. When the Great War broke out he was working in the Derry Shipyard. His mother resided at Broughshane, Ballymena.

Reid, Private James, 10520

James Reid, 1st Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers, a native of Dublin, died at the Dardanelles on July 26, 1915. A member of Clooney Hall Methodist Church, he was the son of Mr and Mrs James Reid, 104, Fountain Street, Londonderry, and possibly the brother of Lydia, who married John Burns, mate of one of his Majesty’s trawlers, at Clooney Hall Methodist Church in April 1916.

James Reid’s remains are interred in Lancashire Landing Cemetery, Turkey, and his name is commemorated on the Diamond War Memorial.

Lancashire Landing Cemetery is named after the 1st Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers, who landed at W Beach nearby – the beach was known as Lancashire Landing.

The Lancashires encountered stiff resistance when they landed on April 25, 1915, and six Victoria Crosses were awarded for gallantry to men of the Battalion – the ‘six VCs before breakfast.’

James Reid had seven years’ service in the Dublins. His brother, Private Robert Reid (who was later killed), was, at the time of James’ death, in the 2nd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, in France, and his father was in the 12th Battalion, which he had recently joined.

Daly, Lance Corporal Francis Peter, 16388

Francis Peter Daly, 3rd Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, was born at Toronto, York, enlisted at Belfast, and died on July 27, 1915.

He was the husband of Margaret Daly, and his remains are interred in Londonderry City Cemetery.

At the Military Hospital, Ebrington Barracks, Londonderry, on Tuesday, July 27, 1915, Dr Michael O’Kane, J.P., city coroner, held an inquest touching the death of Lance Corporal Daly, a native of Belfast.

Private Fitzpatrick deposed that he had known Daly for about six weeks, and both were attached to the garrison police.

Daly, who was about forty-four or forty-five years of age, always appeared to be in good health, and never complained.

On Monday night, when Fitzpatrick came in, Daly was sleeping, and in the morning Fitzpatrick asked him the time, and he told him it was six minutes to seven.

At that time Daly appeared to be in the best of health.

Fitzpatrick went out and returned shortly afterwards, and found daly with his hands closed and grinding his teeth.

He called on Lance Corporal Leonard, who sent for Sergeant Bracken, and when the latter came Daly was dead.

Sergeant Bracken, in his evidence, stated he had known Daly for six weeks.

He was a man of exemplary character and appeared in good health.

He was a widower, and had a family.

Lieutenant J. C. Martin, R.A.M.C., said, according to the records at the Barracks, Daly was a patient in the military hospital in March, suffering from rheumatic fever. When he was called between seven and eight o’clock that morning to see Daly he was of opinion that death was due to heart failure, but to this he could not certify.

Subsequently, from instructions received from the coroner, Dr Killen and he made a post-mortem examination.

He found the man had a badly diseased heart, which weighed twenty-six ounces, the normal weight being nine ounces.

This condition of the heart might have caused death at any time. From examination they found that death was due to hypertrophy of the heart.

Dr J. W. Killen, who assisted in the examination, concurred with Lieutenant Martin.

The jury found a verdict in accordance with the medical testimony.

The funeral of Corporal Peter Daly took place from Ebrington Barracks to Londonderry City Cemetery, and was attended by a firing party, under Lieutenant Dickson, and the pipe and brass bands of the 3rd Inniskillings, under Drum Major Leech.

The coffin, covered with the Union Flag, was borne on a gun carriage. The Reverend D. Quigley, C.C., Waterside, officiated at the graveside.

McAnanney, Gunner Mark, 14212

Mark McAnanney, 12th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery, was born at Templemore, County Donegal, enlisted at Edinburgh, Scotland, and died in Flanders on July 31, 1915.

Aged 33, he was the son of Mrs McAnanney, 185, Bishop Street, and husband of Mrs Teresa McAnanney, 7, Long Tower Street, and 31, Sloane’s Terrace, Derry.

His name is commemorated on the Diamond War Memorial, and his remains are interred in Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery, Ieper, West Vlaanderen, Belgium. Vlamertinghe Military Cemetery was started by French troops in 1914.

The cemetery was then used by Field Ambulances and fighting units until June 1917, when the cemetery was closed and the New Military Cemetery opened. Gunner McAnanney, who had been serving at the Front with the British Expeditionary Force for almost twelve months, took part in several engagements.

At the time of his death two of his brothers, William McAnanney and Bernard McAnanney, were serving with the colours, the former with the Royal Dublin Fusiliers and the latter with the Royal Irish Fusiliers.

Mrs McAnanney received from the Front particulars of how her husband fell in the following communication, dated August 2, 1915: ‘No. 14212 Gunner Mark McAnanney, No. 12 (Siege) Battery Y, R.G.A., :- Madam – It is with the deepest regret I write to inform you of the above-named having been killed in action on the morning of 31-7-15.

‘He was killed at his telephone, and his death was instantaneous.

‘I personally very much regret his decease, as he was always such a cheerful, willing worker, and a great favourite with both officers and men.

‘He was always full of pluck and ready for any work.

‘He was killed in the middle of a battle, and so died a true soldier’s death – another good man to have his name placed for ever on our great roll of honour of heroes who have given life itself for the great cause of honour, home, and freedom. He was buried beside other comrades in the ______________ Soldiers’ Cemetery, near _______________ (in Flanders) by the Roman Catholic chaplain, and a wooden soldier’s cross, with the date and his name, erected over the grave.

‘To you I wish to extend, on behalf of myself, my officers, non-commissioned officers and men, our sincerest sympathy in your great bereavement, and I only trust that this sympathy and the knowledge that he was liked in the battery by officers and men, and that he did his duty and died like a true soldier in the midst of a battle may in future years be a source of comfort to you. – Yours sincerely, F.P. Hutchinson.’