Sunday, 8 July 2018

GORMAN, William

Private, 8th Batt., Canadian Infantry
Service No: 150090
Died: 07/02/1917
Age: 25

Interred in Fosse No.10 Communal Cemetery Extension, Sains-en-Gohelle
Remembered on family memorial in Bangor Cemetery

Born William John Robinson Gorman on 23rd December 1892, he was the son of Thomas Balmer Gorman, a Druggist (chemist) and his wife Margaret (nee McDowell). The family were living in Ballyholme but later moved to Bridge Street in Bangor.

His mother died in 1899 when William was only seven and was interred in Bangor Churchyard. His father later remarried in 1907.

He was educated in Bangor Grammar School and on leaving in 1907 took up a position as a Chemists Assistant in his father's shop.

He moved to Canada and was working as a salesman and enlisted in Winnpeg on the 26th July 1915.

In September 1915, he left Montreal on the ss Corsican arriving in England in early November where he joined the 11th Batt. He was raised to Lance Corporal on 30th November 1915.

On 24th March 1916 he left for France, reverting to the rank of Private at his own request, arriving on teh 26th March were he joined the 8th Battalion, 4th Canadians.

On 7th February 1917 he was accidentally killed but no details as to the circumstances have been found.

On 22nd February 1917, a memorial service was held in Hamilton Road Presbyterain Church were the minister, Rev. W. A. Hill, stated that he was the fourth member of that congregation who has made the supreme sacrifice.




Sunday, 27 May 2018

BEATTIE, Norman

Sergeant, "B" Co. 10th Batt., Royal Irish Rifles
Service No: 14148
Died: 19/12/1915
Age: 30

Interred in Doullens Communal Cemetery Extension
Remembered on family memorial in Bangor Cemetery

Norman Beattie was born in Ballycloughan on the 28th October 1885. He was the youngest son of William Thomas Beattie, a commercial clerk, and his wife Mary Beattie (nee Hanna).

The family later moved to Belfast were they lived in Eglantine Avenue.

On leaving school, Norman went in to a career as an chartered accountant serving his apprenticeship with the firm of Martin E. Lynas & Co., Donegall Square East, Belfast before joining the firm of Messrs. Price, Waterhouse, & Co., London. He was a member of the Belfast Society of Chartered Accountants and an active member of the Balmoral Golf Club.

On the formation of the Ulster Division both Normand and his brother William enlisted with the 10th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (South Belfast Volunteers) both attaining the rank of Sergeant.

The Belfast Newsletter of 23rd December 1915 reported that "Sergeant Norman Beattie, 10th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles (South Belfast Volunteers), has been wounded in both legs. Sergeant Beattie is a son of Mrs. Beattie, Eglantine Avenue, Belfast, and a brother of Sergeant W. H. Beattie, also of the South Belfast Regiment, who is now a patient in the Dublin Castle Red Cross Hospital..."

But while his brother William recovered and went on to attain the rank of 2nd Lieutenant Norman succumbed to his wounds and died on 19 December.



KILLED IN ACTION.
BEATTIE – December 19, 1915 (the result of wounds received in France), Sergeant Norman Beattie, 10th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles, youngest son of W. T. Beattie, 60, Eglinton Avenue, Belfast.
Belfast Newsletter, 24th December 1915


Monday, 9 April 2018

MORRISON, Thomas Dawson MC

Captain, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers
Died: 03/03/1985
Age: 92

Interred in Bangor Cemetery

Thomas Dawson Morrison was born on 14th September 1893 to James Morrison, a School Teacher and Mary Ann Morrison (nee Dawson).

The eldest of their four children, Thomas and his family lived in Mountstewart before moving to Regent Street in Newtownards.

On enlisting Thomas was appointed temporary Second Lieutenant in Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers from 16th November 1915. While acting Lieutenant and adjutant he was promoted Lieutenant on 1st July 1917; and acting Captain while holding appointment of adjutant from 3rd August 1917.

Thomas was award the Military Cross on 16th September 1918: "For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. During a heavy enemy attack he led an assaulting party with great dash, and retook a position. Throughout operations his untiring energy and cheerfulness were of the greatest assistance."

He was also award the Croix de Guerre in 1918: "The President of the French Republic has awarded the Croix de Guere to Captain T. D. Morrison, M.C., 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, Newtownards, and Second-Lieutenant J. M. M'Caw, M.C., 2nd Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, formerly of Portglenone. Belfast Newsletter, 16th December 1918

After the war, in 1920, Thomas enlisted in the Royal Irish Constabulary and on the formation of the Royal Ulster Constabulary in 1922 was District Inspector

In 1925 he married Elizabeth Stuart, only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles J. Stuart, Bank of Ireland House, Newtownards.

In November 1926, Thomas was one of six Ulstermen appointed to the Dublin Bar and in January 1927 was called the following to the Bar of Northern Ireland.

Thomas died on 3rd March 1985.



MORRISON, T. D. (Captain) — The Officers and General Council of the Northern Ireland Commonwealth Games Council regret to learn of the death of their esteemed Life Vice-president and former Chairman and tender their deepest sympathy to his Wife and Family Circle.
Belfast Telegraph, 5th March 1985


MORRISON, THOMAS DAWSON (Captain) -— Died March 3, 1985, — Service tomorrow (Thursday), 11.30 a.m. at Ballygilbert Presbyterian Church, and then to Bangor New Cemetery. — Deeply regretted by his Wife Margaret and Sons Daryl and Peter.
Belfast Telegraph, 6th March 1985


MORRISON, T. D. (Captain) — March 3, 1985. – The Officers and Members of the Ulster Council, Irish Amateur Boxing Association deeply regret the death of their former President and tender their deepest sympathy to his Wife and Sons. – A. Uprichard, President; P. McCrory, Secretary.
Belfast Telegraph, 7th March 1985

Monday, 19 March 2018

McCANN, Thomas Andrew

Pilot Officer T. A. McCann
Pilot Officer, 134 Sqdn., Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Service No: 116980
Died: 27/07/1942
Age: 23
 
Interred in El Alamein War Cemetery
Remembered on family memorial in Bangor Cemetery

Thomas McCann was born in Lisburn in 1919, the eldest son of Thomas A. M. McCann, an Income Tax Inspector and his wife Florence McCann (nee Sheppard).

Thomas was educated at Bangor Grammar School, and on leaving took up a position with the Belfast Harbour Commissioners.

He joned the R.A.F.V.R. in January, 1939, and was called up on the outbreak of war, got his wings on his 21st birthday.


Thomas took part in the Battle of Britain before being posted to 134 Squadron which went to Russia in August 1941, leaving there in November.

Commissioned in February 1942, Thomas was posted with 134 Squadron, which were operating Hurricanes, to North Africa.

He had been attached to 213 Squadron and, on July 27th 1942, was scrambled from Landing Ground 154, south-west of Alexandria. The squadron was bounced by Me109s as they took off and he and two other pilots were killed.

Thomas was survived by his wife Barbara Bradshaw and an eight-month-old daughter.

Mr. M. Wilkins, M.A., Headmaster of Bangor Grammar School, writing of Thomas said:—

“It was with deep regret that we learn that hope appears to be abandoned for the safety of Pilot-Officer Thomas A. M'Cann, last week reported to have been killed on active service in the Middle East. Another young life has been added to the tragic and glorious roll of Old Boys of Bangor Grammar School who have made the supreme sacrifice in the present war. To-day we reckon their number at seventeen, while the fate of at least three more is still uncertain and two others are prisoners of war.

“Tom M'Cann joined the School in September, 1931, at the age of twelve, and was with us for three years. It seems a long time ago, but the memory of that slight active little fair-haired figure and of his blue eyes and friendly humorous smile seems as vivid as yesterday. He was not a scholar, but everyone liked him, and he joined with goodwill and enthusiasm in all the activities and rough-and-tumble of school life. He never gave any trouble that I knew of, for his heart was in the right place in boyhood as in manhood. He was just a good sample of the average boy — inconspicuous and modest, but capable of quiet heroism in response to inspiring leadership. His great day came when unexpectedly he won the Mile Race at the annual athletic sports! Aged only fifteen and looking absurdly small to be the winner, he ran with graceful action and perfect steadiness: never was there so popular a win, never do I remember such a scene of delighted excitement. His name became a household word with us, and it was no surprise to hear in later years, of his front-line service with the Royal Air Force and of his pioneer work in flying Hurricanes to the North Russian front.

“It is a great privilege and responsibility to have the care of boys like Tom M'Cann in the critical years when they are growing into men. And an even greater responsibility rests upon us all to labour that the Divine Purpose inherent in such lives and deaths may be fulfilled.”



DIED ON ACTIVE SERVICE
McCann – November, 1941, result of enemy action, Thomas, second son of Mrs. F. A. McCann, 92, Gregg Street, Bangor, and the late Mr. Thomas McCann. Deeply regretted by his sorrowing Mother, Brother and Sister.



CWGC headstone photo Colonel C. R. Romberg, R.A.
Portrait photo from the Battle of Britain Monument website.

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

HEWITT, William Arthur

Sec.-Lieut. William A. Hewitt

Second Lieutenant, 9th Battalion, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers
Died: 01/07/1916
Age: 23

Recorded on Thiepval Memorial
Recorded on family memorial in Bangor Cemetery

William Arthur Hewitt was born in Princess Gardens, Bangor, on 23rd January 1893. He was the son of James Henry Hewitt, Manager of the Workshops for the Blind, and Jeannie Denby Hewitt nee Marshall. The family appear to move between Belfast and Bangor: William’s older brothers being born in South Parade Belfast, in 1885 and 1887; the family living in Rosetta Park, Belfast, in the 1901 census; then appearing in Altamount, Downshire Road, Bangor in the 1911 census. (The parents later living at 97 Mornington Park, Bangor).


He worked as a Clerk for the Belfast Banking Company.

Before the war, William, along with his brothers Ernest and Holt, joined the 1st Battalion North Down Regiment of the Ulster Volunteer Force, serving in ‘D’ Company, and is recorded on their Roll of Honour.

He was also a prominent member of the North of Ireland Football Club on whose memorial he is also recorded.


William received a commission as a temporary Second Lieutenant in the 9th Batt., Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers on the 6th April 1915.


Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt.
Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (County Tyrone Volunteers), missing, is a son of Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamount, Downshire Road, Bangor, manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, Belfast. Heartfelt sympathy will go out to Mr. Hewitt, who has suffered very severely through the war, two other sons having already figured in the casualty lists – Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, of the King’s Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), who was killed last year, and Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt, Machine Gun Corps, reported missing, believed killed, last week.
Belfast News Letter, 10th July 1916
_________________________________

Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt.
Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire road, Bangor, County Down, recieved a letter yesterday from the commanding officer of the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), which leaves little doubt that he has lost a third son, Second Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt, who had previously been reported missing. Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, the King's Own (Royal Lancaster) Regiment, and Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt, 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, attached Brigade Machine Gun Company, have already been killed, the former last year, and the latter a few days ago.
The Daily Express, Dublin, 12th July 1916.
_________________________________

THE ROLL OF HONOUR.
THREE BROTHERS KILLED.
Mr. J. H. Hewitt's Heavy Bereavement
Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire Road, Bangor, Manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, Belfast, received a letter yesterday from the commanding officer of the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), which leaves little doubt that he has lost a third son, Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt, who had previously been reported missing. Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt, 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, attached Brigade Machine Gun Company, have already been killed, the former last year and the latter a few days ago. Lieutenant-Colonel Ricardo's letter regarding the third boy is as follows:–
July 6, 1916.
Dear Mr. Hewitt – I hardly know how to write. A letter is such a poor thing. Your two boys were loved by everyone in the regiment. They had such a sunny nature, together with such sterling characters that they were an example and inspiration to all. I cannot give you details of how Holt fell. Captain MacConachie, I am sure, will do that. Your little lad Willie led his platoon over our parapet, and the last I saw of him was his happy smile as I wished him luck. They got across to the German trenches, in front of which they came under an appalling machine-gun fire. Your lad was hit, and Sergeant Lally, who is now in hospital wounded, was with him when he passed over. It was a sad day for us, and I feel quite stunned and heartbroken. Your Willie was one of the nicest-minded boys I ever knew. My wife saw a letter he wrote to the widow of a man in his company, and she told me it was the most beautiful letter of sympathy she had ever read. No one but a spiritually-minded boy could have written such a letter. I made him my assistant adjutant, and of all my young lads I could spare him the least. No words can express the sympathy we all feel for yourself and Mrs. Hewitt and your family in the grievous double blow. I cannot write more.
      Lieutenant E. W. Crawford, adjutant of the Tyrone Battalion, has also written a sympathetic letter to Mr. Hewitt, and states – "The whole attack was the most heroic thing possible. The Divisional General, speaking of it, said it was the most gallant and heroic incident of the war. The pity of it was we lost our best, both officers and men."
Belfast News Letter, 12th July 1916
_________________________________

Missing
Second-Lieut. W. A. Hewitt, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (County Tyrone Volunteers), missing, is a son of Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamount, Downshire Road, Bangor. Two other of his sons have figured in the casualty list.
The Witness, 14th July 1916
_________________________________

THIRD BROTHER TO FALL
Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire Road, Bangor, who is the respected manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, Belfast, received a letter to-day from the commanding officer of the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), which leaves little doubt that he has lost a third son, Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt, who had previously been reported missing. Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt, 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, attached Brigade Machine Gun Company, have already been killed, the former last year and the latter a few days ago. Lieutenant-Colonel Ricardo's letter regarding the third boy is as follows:–
July 6, 1916.
Dear Mr. Hewitt. – I hardly know how to write. A letter is such a poor thing. Your two boys were loved by everyone in the regiment. They had such a sunny nature, together with such sterling characters that they were an example and inspiration to all. I cannot give you details of how Holt fell. Captain MacConachie, I am sure, will do that.
      Your little lad Willie led his platoon over our parapet, and the last I saw of him was his happy smile as I wished him luck. They got across to the German trenches, in front of which they came under an appalling machine-gun fire. Your lad was hit, and Sergeant Lally, who is now in hospital wounded, was with him when he passed over.
      The Ulster Division achieved the impossible. Outside testimony says that our advance was probably the most wonderful thing that even this war has seen, and no other troops, I believe, would have continued to advance in the face of the fire they met. This brigade got to the objective allotted.
      It was a sad day for us, and I feel quite stunned and heartbroken. Your Willie was one of the nicest-minded boys I ever knew. My wife saw a letter he wrote to the widow of a man in his company, and she told me it was the most beautiful letter of sympathy she had ever read. No one but a spiritually-minded boy could have written such a letter.
      I made him my assistant adjutant, and of all my young lads I could spare him the least. No words can express the sympathy we all feel for yourself and Mrs. Hewitt and your family in the grievous double blow. I cannot write more.
                               A. RICARDO,
                               Lieut.-Col. 9th R. Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers).

Lieutenant E. W. Crawford, the adjutant, has written as follows:–
July 6
My Dear Mr. Hewitt,–
      I suppose vou will have heard that both Holt and Willie fell in the attack we made last Saturday. Your loss is so terrible that any words of mine are of little worth. Poor Holt, the most lovable and cheerful of souls! His sergeant says he was killed outright. He was one of my closest friends, and although he had gone to the Machine-gun Corps we, of the 9th (Inniskillings), considered him ours. Willie led his platoon fearlessly over the top. One of his men told me that he was wounded but still carried on, but had to stop — from loss of blood. After that the only thing I can gather is that Sergeant Lally of his battery, who himself was wounded, said he saw him die. He was a grand boy, one of the finest characters I have seen. He acted as assistant adjutant to me, and no more conscientious and better boy ever lived. The whole attack was the most heroic thing possible. The Divisional General, speaking of it, said it was the most gallant and heroic incident of the war. The pity of it was we lost our best, both officers and men. Nothing on this head can atone for your losses, but you have the certain knowledge that theirs was a fine and fitting finish to a fine life. Personally I cannot tell you how I feel. I have lost two of the best of friends. I am sending you on Willie's kit. If I can tell you anything more, or if I can do anything for you, please do not hesitate to let me know. With much sympathy and kindest regards, I am, yours very sincerely,
                                         E. W. Crawford, Adjutant.

Mr. and Mrs. Hewitt and family will, we feel certain, have the sincere sympathy of the community in the losses they have sustained.
Larne Times and Weekly Telegraph, 15th July 1916.
_________________________________

Ulster News in Brief
The following resolution was passed at the monthly meeting of the Executive Committee of the Bangor Soldiers' Club, on the motion of Mr. John Polson, seconded by Mr. D. Cheyne -- "That this meeting of the committee of the Bangor Soldiers' Club places on record its deep sympathy with the relatives of those who have fallen, and expresses its pride in the gallant bravery of the Ulster Division, which has won for itself a name of imperishable renown. That copies of this resolution be sent to Mr. and Mrs. Hewitt and those connected with the work of the Soldiers' Club who have been similarly bereaved."
The Witness, 21st July 1916
_________________________________

THREE BANGOR BROTHERS KILLED
Memorial Tablet Unveiled.
The unveiling of a memorial tablet commemorating the heroic deaths of Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and his brothers, Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt and Second-Lieutenant. W. A. Hewitt, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, took place at the morning service in Bangor Parish Church on Sunday. There was a large congregation, and amongst those present were Mr. J. H. Hewitt, father of these gallant boys, and other relatives. Lieutenant Hewitt was killed on 15th June, 1915, and his brothers fell on that day of glorious but sad memories, the 1st July, 1916.
      The tablet was unveiled by the Lord Bishop of Derry and Raphoe (Right Rev. J. I. Peacocke), who was a former rector of Bangor, and was an intimate friend of the family. After the second lesson his Lordship, with the rector (Rev. J. A. Carey) proceeded to the west wall, where he read the dedicatory prayers. In the course of a loving tribute to their memory, his Lordship said he was proud to have known such boys. They had fallen in the service of their country, and it was but fitting that their memories should be perpetuated in the church in which they were wont to worship. Their noble lives and heroic deaths would long be remembered in the parish and far beyond its bounds. His Lordship also referred feelingly to the death of Captain Richard I. Robson, another member of the congregation, who fell in battle a few days ago. The hymn, "For all the saints who from their labours rest," was sung in place of the anthem. The memorial brass has been erected by Mr. and Mrs. Hewitt.
Belfast Newsletter, 15th August 1917

Portrait image from the RBAI Inst and the Great War website

Monday, 12 March 2018

HEWITT, Holt Montgomery

Lieut. Holt Montgomery Hewitt

Lieutenant, 109th Battalion, Machine Gun Corps
Died: 01/07/1916
Age: 29

Interred in Mill Road Cemetery, Thiepval
Recorded on family memorial in Bangor Cemetery

Holt Montgomery Hewitt was born in South Parade, Belfast, on 11th June 1887. He was the son of James Henry Hewitt, Manager of Workshops for the Industrious Blind, and Jeannie Denby Hewitt nee Marshall. The family appear to move between Belfast and Bangor: Ernest’s brother William being born in Princess Gardens, Bangor, in 1893; the family living in Rosetta Park, Belfast, in the 1901 census; then appearing in Altamount, Downshire Road, Bangor in the 1911 census. (The parents later living at 97 Mornington Park, Bangor).

In the 1911 census he is listed as a Commercial Traveller but by the outbreak of the War had become manager for Messrs. W. M. Barkley & Co., coal merchants.

Prior to the war, Holt, along with his brothers Ernest and William, joined the 1st Battalion North Down Regiment of the Ulster Volunteer Force, serving in ‘D’ Company, and is recorded on their Roll of Honour.

He was also a prominent member of the North of Ireland Football Club on whose memorial he is also recorded.


Holt received a commission from temporary Second Lieutenant to temporary Lieutenant in the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers on the 2nd September 1915. He was transferred to the Machine Gun Corps on 23rd January 1916.



LIEUTENANT HOLT M. HEWITT.
Lieutenant H. M. Hewitt, Machine Gun Corps, officially reported missing, believed killed, is a son of Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire Road, Bangor, who is well known in Belfast as Manager of the Workshops for the Blind. Before joining the Ulster Division in September, 1914, Lieutenant Hewitt was manager for Messrs. W. M. Barkley & Co., coal merchants. A member of the North Down Regiment, U.V.F., Lieutenant Hewitt served first in the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), and in January last was transferred to the Machine Gun Corps. He was a prominent Rugby half-back, first for Bangor F.C., and subsequently for North of Ireland. He has another brother in the Service, and a third brother, Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, 4th Battalion King's Own (Royal Lancaster) Regiment, who was killed in action in May, 1915.
Belfast Newsletter, 7th July 1916
_________________________________

Missing -- Believed killed
LIEUT. H. M. HEWITT.
Lieut. H. M. Hewitt, officially reported missing, believed killed, joined the Ulster Division in September, 1914, serving first in the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), and being transferred in January last to the Machine Gun Corps. He is a son of Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire Road, Bangor, who is well-known in Belfast as manager of the Workshops for the Blind. Before joining the Ulster Division Lieut. Hewitt was manager for Messrs. W. M. Barkley & Co., coal merchants.
The Witness, 7th July 1916
_________________________________

Ulster News in Brief
The following resolution was passed at the monthly meeting of the Executive Committee of the Bangor Soldiers' Club, on the motion of Mr. John Polson, seconded by Mr. D. Cheyne -- "That this meeting of the committee of the Bangor Soldiers' Club places on record its deep sympathy with the relatives of those who have fallen, and expresses its pride in the gallant bravery of the Ulster Division, which has won for itself a name of imperishable renown. That copies of this resolution be sent to Mr. and Mrs. Hewitt and those connected with the work of the Soldiers' Club who have been similarly bereaved."
The Witness, 21 July 1916
_________________________________

THE ROLL OF HONOUR.
THREE BROTHERS KILLED.
Mr. J. H. Hewitt's Heavy Bereavement
Mr J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire Road, Bangor, Manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, Belfast, received a letter yesterday from the commanding officer of the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), which leaves little doubt that he has lost a third son, Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt, who had previously been reported missing. Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt, 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, attached Brigade Machine Gun Company, have already been killed, the former last year and the latter a few days ago. Lieutenant-Colonel Ricardo's letter regarding the third boy is as follows:–
July 6, 1916.
Dear Mr. Hewitt – I hardly know how to write. A letter is such a poor thing. Your two boys were loved by everyone in the regiment. They had such a sunny nature, together with such sterling characters that they were an example and inspiration to all. I cannot give you details of how Holt fell. Captain MacConachie, I am sure, will do that. Your little lad Willie led his platoon over our parapet, and the last I saw of him was his happy smile as I wished him luck. They got across to the German trenches, in front of which they came under an appalling machine-gun fire. Your lad was hit, and Sergeant Lally, who is now in hospital wounded, was with him when he passed over. It was a sad day for us, and I feel quite stunned and heartbroken. Your Willie was one of the nicest-minded boys I ever knew. My wife saw a letter he wrote to the widow of a man in his company, and she told me it was the most beautiful letter of sympathy she had ever read. No one but a spiritually-minded boy could have written such a letter. I made him my assistant adjutant, and of all my young lads I could spare him the least. No words can express the sympathy we all feel for yourself and Mrs. Hewitt and your family in the grievous double blow. I cannot write more.
      Lieutenant E. W. Crawford, adjutant of the Tyrone Battalion, has also written a sympathetic letter to Mr. Hewitt, and states – "The whole attack was the most heroic thing possible. The Divisional General, speaking of it, said it was the most gallant and heroic incident of the war. The pity of it was we lost our best, both officers and men."
Belfast Newsletter, 12th July 1916
_________________________________

THREE BANGOR BROTHERS KILLED
Memorial Tablet Unveiled.
The unveiling of a memorial tablet commemorating the heroic deaths of Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and his brothers, Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt and Second-Lieutenant. W. A. Hewitt, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, took place at the morning service in Bangor Parish Church on Sunday. There was a large congregation, and amongst those present were Mr. J. H. Hewitt, father of these gallant boys, and other relatives. Lieutenant Hewitt was killed on 15th June, 1915, and his brothers fell on that day of glorious but sad memories, the 1st July, 1916.
      The tablet was unveiled by the Lord Bishop of Derry and Raphoe (Right Rev. J. I. Peacocke), who was a former rector of Bangor, and was an intimate friend of the family. After the second lesson his Lordship, with the rector (Rev. J. A. Carey) proceeded to the west wall, where he read the dedicatory prayers. In the course of a loving tribute to their memory, his Lordship said he was proud to have known such boys. They had fallen in the service of their country, and it was but fitting that their memories should be perpetuated in the church in which they were wont to worship. Their noble lives and heroic deaths would long be remembered in the parish and far beyond its bounds. His Lordship also referred feelingly to the death of Captain Richard I. Robson, another member of the congregation, who fell in battle a few days ago. The hymn, "For all the saints who from their labours rest," was sung in place of the anthem. The memorial brass has been erected by Mr. and Mrs. Hewitt.
Belfast Newsletter, 15th August 1917

Portrait image from the RBAI Inst and the Great War website

Sunday, 11 March 2018

HEWITT, Ernest Henry

Lieut. Ernest Henry Hewitt
Lieutenant, 4th Battalion, King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment)
Died: Between 15/06/1915 and 16/06/1915
Age: 29

Recorded on Le Touret Memorial
Recorded on family memorial in Bangor Cemetery
Mentioned in Despatches. 

Ernest Henry Hewitt was born in South Parade, Belfast, on 5th November 1885. He was the son of James Henry Hewitt, a clerk (later manager of Workshops for the Blind), and Jeannie Denby Hewitt nee Marshall. The family appear to move between Belfast and Bangor: Ernest’s brother William being born in Princess Gardens, Bangor, in 1893; the family living in Rosetta Park, Belfast, in the 1901 census; then appearing in Altamount, Downshire Road, Bangor in the 1911 census. (The parents later living at 97 Mornington Park, Bangor). 

Ernest is listed in the 1911 census as Secretary of an Insurance Company.

Before the war, Ernest, along with his brothers William and Holt, joined the 1st Battalion North Down Regiment of the Ulster Volunteer Force, serving in ‘C’ Company, and is recorded on their Roll of Honour. 

He was also a prominent member of the North of Ireland Football Club for whom he played as a forward and on whose memorial he is also recorded.


Ernest enlisted on the outbreak of war and received a commission as Second Lieutenant. He was later made temporary Lieutenant in the Royal Lancaster Regiment. He was reported as missing after an attack on the German position on the 15th June 1915. 


BELFAST OFFICER MISSING.
The Most Popular Officer in his Battalion
Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, son of Mr. J. H. Hewitt, the esteemed manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, Belfast, has been missing from his regiment — the 4th Battalion King’s Own Royal Lancasters (Territorials) — since the 15th inst. Lieutenant Hewitt, who has two other brothers in the army, volunteered for military service the day after the declaration of war. He had previously been connected with the North Down Regiment of the Ulster Volunteer Force. He was a prominent playing member of the North of Ireland Football Club. Major Thomson, who commands the 4th Battalion Lancashire Regiment, has addressed the following letter to the missing officers' father:– "It is with much regret that I inform you that after an attack on the enemy's position on the 15th inst. your son was reported as missing. From the information available it is impossible to state what has happened to him, as it has not been possible to examine the ground where he was last seen. I hope that soon we shall be able to trace him, and get some definite news concerning him. If I do hear anything further I shall immediately communicate with you. The deepest sympathy of all the officers and men of the battalion is with you and your family in this misfortune. Lieutenant Hewitt, since he joined us, has become the most popular officer in the battalion. He was a splendid soldier, and we hope that he will soon be restored to you and to us."
Belfast Newsletter, 23rd June 1915
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LIEUT. E. H. HEWITT MISSING.
The many friends in Belfast and Bangor of Lieut. E. H. Hewitt, of the 4th Batt. King's Own Royal Lancaster Regiment (Territorials), will regret to learn that he has been missing since 15th inst. The news was received by his father, Mr. J. H. Hewitt, Allamount, Downshire Road, Bangor, who is the respected manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, and is contained in the following letter dated 17th inst:—

Dear Sir, — It is with much regret that I inform you that after an attack on the enemy's position on the 15th Inst, your son was reported as missing. From the information available it is impossible to state what has happened to him, as it is impossible to examine the ground where he was last seen. I hope that soon we shall be able to trace him, and get some definite news concerning him. If I do hear anything further I shall immediately communicate with you. The deepest sympathy of all the officers and men of the Battalion is with you and your family in this misfortune. Lieutenant Hewitt, since he joined us, has become the most popular officer in the battalion. He was a splendid soldier, and we hope that he will soon be restored to you and to us. — Yours sincerely,
ROBT THOMPSON, Major,
Commanding 4th Battalion The Royal Lancaster Regiment.

Lieutenant Hewitt is one of three brothers serving in the Army. With several young Belfast men he volunteered the day after war broke out, and was posted to the 4th Lancasters, a smart Territorial battalion, which he accompanied to the front recently. He was a member of the North Down Regiment, U.V.F., and one of the best known players in the North of Ireland Rugby Club, which he has represented as a forward for several seasons.
Larne Times and Weekly Telegraph, 26th June 1915
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MISSING – LIEUT. E. H. HEWITT, 4th Battalion Royal Lancaster Regiment (T.F.), missing in France since Tuesday night, 15th June. Any information gratefully recieved by his father, J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Bangor, Co. Down.
The Daily Express, Dublin, 2nd July 1915
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THE ROLL OF HONOUR.
THREE BROTHERS KILLED.
Mr. J. H. Hewitt's Heavy Bereavement
Mr J. H. Hewitt, Altamont, Downshire Road, Bangor, Manager of the Workshops for the Blind, Royal Avenue, Belfast, received a letter yesterday from the commanding officer of the 9th Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (Tyrone Volunteers), which leaves little doubt that he has lost a third son, Second-Lieutenant W. A. Hewitt, who had previously been reported missing. Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt, the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt, 9th Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, attached Brigade Machine Gun Company, have already been killed, the former last year and the latter a few days ago. Lieutenant-Colonel Ricardo's letter regarding the third boy is as follows:–
July 6, 1916.
Dear Mr. Hewitt – I hardly know how to write. A letter is such a poor thing. Your two boys were loved by everyone in the regiment. They had such a sunny nature, together with such sterling characters that they were an example and inspiration to all. I cannot give you details of how Holt fell. Captain MacConachie, I am sure, will do that. Your little lad Willie led his platoon over our parapet, and the last I saw of him was his happy smile as I wished him luck. They got across to the German trenches, in front of which they came under an appalling machine-gun fire. Your lad was hit, and Sergeant Lally, who is now in hospital wounded, was with him when he passed over. It was a sad day for us, and I feel quite stunned and heartbroken. Your Willie was one of the nicest-minded boys I ever knew. My wife saw a letter he wrote to the widow of a man in his company, and she told me it was the most beautiful letter of sympathy she had ever read. No one but a spiritually-minded boy could have written such a letter. I made him my assistant adjutant, and of all my young lads I could spare him the least. No words can express the sympathy we all feel for yourself and Mrs. Hewitt and your family in the grievous double blow. I cannot write more.
      Lieutenant E. W. Crawford, adjutant of the Tyrone Battalion, has also written a sympathetic letter to Mr. Hewitt, and states – "The whole attack was the most heroic thing possible. The Divisional General, speaking of it, said it was the most gallant and heroic incident of the war. The pity of it was we lost our best, both officers and men." 
Belfast Newsletter, 12th July 1916
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THREE BANGOR BROTHERS KILLED
Memorial Tablet Unveiled.
The unveiling of a memorial tablet commemorating the heroic deaths of Lieutenant E. H. Hewitt the King's Own (Royal Lancaster Regiment), and his brothers, Lieutenant Holt M. Hewitt and Second-Lieutenant. W. A. Hewitt, Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers, took place at the morning service in Bangor Parish Church on Sunday. There was a large congregation, and amongst those present were Mr. J. H. Hewitt, father of these gallant boys, and other relatives. Lieutenant Hewitt was killed on 15th June, 1915, and his brothers fell on that day of glorious but sad memories, the 1st July, 1916.
      The tablet was unveiled by the Lord Bishop of Derry and Raphoe (Right Rev. J. I. Peacocke), who was a former rector of Bangor, and was an intimate friend of the family. After the second lesson his Lordship, with the rector (Rev. J. A. Carey) proceeded to the west wall, where he read the dedicatory prayers. In the course of a loving tribute to their memory, his Lordship said he was proud to have known such boys. They had fallen in the service of their country, and it was but fitting that their memories should be perpetuated in the church in which they were wont to worship. Their noble lives and heroic deaths would long be remembered in the parish and far beyond its bounds. His Lordship also referred feelingly to the death of Captain Richard I. Robson, another member of the congregation, who fell in battle a few days ago. The hymn, "For all the saints who from their labours rest," was sung in place of the anthem. The memorial brass has been erected by Mr. and Mrs. Hewitt.
Belfast Newsletter, 15th August 1917



Portrait image from the RBAI Inst and the Great War website