Stranraer draper killed on first day at Passchendaele

Gunner James Flanighan
Gunner James Flanighan

The Galloway Gazette, August 18, 1917

The death of 28-year-old Gunner James Flanighan, from 13 High Street, Whithorn, was greeted with much sadness in the town.

Gunner Flanighan, who was serving with the British Expeditionary Force in France, was killed while he was sleeping in his dug-out in the early hours of July 25th.

His commanding officer wrote of him: “In your son I have lost a good, hard-working soldier and a kind honest companion.”

Gunner Flanighan had only been in France for six months when he was killed. He was the second son his parents had lost in the war.

Private Thomas Bryden, from Clenoch Street, Stranraer, was killed on July 31 at the start of the Third Battle of Ypres. He had enlisted in the Royal Scots Fusiliers in February, 1916, and arrived in France in June 1916. He was wounded at the Battle of the Somme, during the capture of Trones Wood, and after being discharged for hospital, returned to the frontline, only to be killed on the first day at Passchendaele. Before the war he worked for Craig & Kyle, a drapers business in George Street.