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Irish Brigade

The story of the 38th (Irish) Brigade in the Second World War

Faugh a Ballagh        Nec Aspera Terrent         Quis Separabit


Chronology


The main events in the life and times of Pat and Ted O’Sullivan that figure in All My Brothers and All My Sons & Daughters.

c1818 Daniel Joseph O’Sullivan (Daniel the Elder) is born in Limerick.

1845 The Irish potato crops are ruined by potato blight. It strikes again in three of the next four years.

c1849 Daniel the Elder arrives in London.

1849 John Hanlon, father of Ted’s mother Lizzie, is born in Tralee. His father was Edmund Hanlon who lived in Rock Street.

c1850 Daniel the Elder forms a union with Dinah Pearson in Woolwich, though they may not have married. Dinah’s first husband had died in Belfast in the 1840s.

1853 Mary Ann Maloney, mother of Ted’s mother Lizzie, is born in London.

1854 William O’Sullivan, Daniel and Dinah’s eldest son, is born.

1856 Richard Halligan, Pat’s grandfather, is born in Longford. Richard’s parents, Edmund and Ann (Farrell), move with their family to Manchester during the late 1850s.

1858 Eliza O’Sullivan is born.

1860 Daniel John O’Sullivan (Daniel the Younger) is born on 20 September.

1861 Frances Kezia Wayte is born in London. Her father, Henry Wayte, came from Wells-next the-sea and was a Royal Naval veteran of the Crimean War and had met his wife Frances Kezia (Morse) when he moved to London in the 1850s.

1874 John Hanlon and Mary Maloney marry at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Camberwell on 9 March. John was then a private in the 12th Regiment of Foot and they establish their family home in Camberwell.

1877 Richard Halligan marries Annie Fox from Liverpool in Ardwick, Manchester.

1879 Daniel the Younger marries Frances Wayte at St Jude’s in Bethnal Green in September.

1880 Daniel and Frances Wayte’s eldest son,  Daniel, is born.

1882 William Webb is born in London.

1884 Lily Ann Halligan, the fourth child of Richard and Annie, is born in Manchester.

1886 Dinah O’Sullivan dies.

1889 Daniel the Elder is involved in the Great Dockers’ Strike in August-September and receives Cardinal Manning’s walking stick for services rendered during the dispute – the cane is still in the safe keeping of Anthony O’Sullivan.

1891 Daniel the Elder dies.

1892 Edmund (Mick) O’Sullivan is born in March.

1893 Richard and Annie Halligan move with their family of 8 children from Manchester to Kennington. Three more children are born to them in London over the next 5 years.

1894 Leo O’Sullivan is born. Lizzie Hanlon, Ted’s mother,  is born in Camberwell.

1896 Thomas O’Sullivan is born.

c1905 William Webb emigrates to Canada.

1906 Mick O’Sullivan leaves school and starts work with the Great Western Railway (GWR).

1914 Mick O’Sullivan and Lizzie Hanlon marry at the Sacred Heart of Jesus Roman Catholic Church in Camberwell at the end of  May. The First World War begins in Europe in August. William Webb joins the Canadian Expeditionary Force at Vulcartier in Quebec during September and travels with the CEF to the UK in October.

1915 Daniel (Dan) O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s first son, is born. William Webb embarks for Belgium with the 1st Canadian Division Ammunition Column.

1917 Ellen (Nellie) O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s first daughter, is born. Pat’s parent’s, William Webb and Lily Ann Halligan, are married at St Anne’s Roman Catholic Church in Kennington.

1918 The First World War ends on 11 November.

1919 Edmund (Ted) O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s third child, is born at Cronin Road in Peckham on 28 February. William Webb is demobbed in London in March. Patricia (Pat) May Webb is born on 28 July.

1920 Frances O’Sullivan, Mick O’Sullivan’s mother, dies.

1921 Thomas (Tom) O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s fourth child, is born. William and Lily Ann Halligan’s second child, Denis Sylvester Webb, is born.

1923 William (Bill) O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s fifth child is born.

1924 Mick and Lizzie move from Peckham to Shakespeare Road in Herne Hill.

1926 Mick O’Sullivan participates in the General Strike in May.

1927 Lilian O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s sixth child, is born. Dan starts at the Brompton Oratory Central School. Mary Ann Hanlon, Lizzie’s mother, dies.

1929 Bernard (Barnie) O’Sullivan, Mick and Lizzie’s seventh child, is born.

1930 Ted starts at the Brompton Oratory.

1932 Mick O’Sullivan is seriously ill with peritonitis.

1934 Ted O’Sullivan leaves the Brompton Oratory and starts work at Gieves & Hawkes in the autumn. Patricia Webb leaves the Brompton Oratory and starts work.

1939 The Second World War begins on 3 September. Ted O’Sullivan is conscripted into the 2nd Battalion of the London Irish Rifles on 19 October.

1940 The 2nd Battalion moves to St Alban’s. In May, they move to Sandy in Bedfordshire, Lowestoft in June, Eaton Hall in Knutsford in July and Birmingham and Haverfordwest in August. Daniel O’Sullivan marries Kathleen Stamp in August. The 2nd Battalion move to Malvern and Ted is promoted to full corporal in November.

1941 The 2nd Battalion move to West Sussex. Nellie marries Laurie Eacott in June.

1942  Pat joins the ATS in September.

The 2nd Battalion are attached to the 38th (Irish) Brigade and move to Didlington in Norfolk in January. The brigade moves to Scotland in June. Ted is promoted to Colour Sergeant and attached to E Company on 10 November. The following day, the 2nd Battalion embarks for North Africa. It arrives in Algiers on 22 November. In December, it enters the Allied line in the Bou Arada area of Tunisia.

1943 William Webb, Pat’s father, dies in London in December.

January – The 2nd Battalion suffers heavy casualties in the battle for points 279 and 286 in Tunisia.

February. – The 2nd Battalion repulses a German attack on the Bou Arada line.

April – The battalion participates in the attack on German defences west of Tunis.

May – The Irish Brigade enters Tunis on 7 May. Italy’s 1st Army surrenders on 12 May. Ted O’Sullivan marches in the Allied victory parade in Tunis on 20 May.

July – The Irish Brigade lands at Syracuse in Sicily on 26 July.August The Irish Brigade takes Centuripe and cross the Simetto river (1-5 August). The Irish Brigade joins the battle of Maletto (11-12 August). Messina falls to General Patton’s 5th Army (17 August). Ted falls ill with malaria for the first time (18 August).

September – The invasion of Italy begins on 3 September. The Irish Brigade arrives in Taranto on 24 September.

October – The Irish Brigade travels by sea from Barletta to Termoli on 5 October. It takes Petacciato on 19 October.

November – The Brigade takes Santa Maria and Fossacesia north of the River Sangro on 29 November.

December – The Irish Brigade are pulled out of the line for rest. The Irish Brigade are posted to the Winter line around Montenero in the Apennines on 27 December.

1944

January – The Irish Brigade is withdrawn from Montenero. The first battle for Cassino takes place. Anzio landings begin on 22 January.

February – The second battle of Cassino begins on 15 February. The Irish Brigade moves to the Cassino front.

March – The third battle of Cassino begins on 15 March. The Irish Brigade is deployed on the Allied lines opposite San Angelo in the River Liri Valley on 21 March. It is deployed on Monte Castellone from 30 March

April – The Irish Brigade is withdrawn from the line on 25 April.

May – The Irish Brigade crosses the River Rapido. On 15 May, the 6th Battalion of the Inniskilllings attack the German lines. On 16 May, the 2nd Battalion attack Sinagoga. Sergeant Eddie Mayo MM is killed by Nebelwerfer mortars in the morning. The Germans withdrawn from Monte Cassino on the morning of 18 May.

June Operation – Overlord begins on 6 June. Ted O’Sullivan and other members of the Irish Brigade are received by Pope Pius XII in the Vatican on 12 June. The brigade participates in the battle of Trasimene on 21-22 June and is withdrawn from the line on 26 June.

July – The Irish Brigade leaves Italy for Egypt.

August – Ted contracts pneumonia after swimming in the sea off Alexandria.

September – The Irish Brigade returns to Italy but Ted is too sick to travel.

October – The 2nd Battalion participates in the battle for Monte Spaduro.

December – Ted O’Sullivan returns to the 2nd Battalion on Boxing Day.

1945 

January to March – The 2nd Battalion are withdrawn to Florence and then posted to the River Senio front.

April – The 2nd Battalion participates in the battle for the Argenta Gap and advance to the River Po.

Mussolini is killed in northern Italy on 28 April. Adolph Hitler commits suicide in Berlin on 30 April and in May, the German Army in Italy surrenders. The surrender of the whole of the German Army is announced and the war ends on 7 May. The Irish Brigade crosses into Austria and begins occupation duties. Ted returns to London for the first time in two-and-a-half year in June and  He meets Pat Webb at Mass and starts courting. In August , Ted returns to Austria.  Labour wins in a landslide in the general election on 5 July. Ted is made Warrant Officer II and promoted to sergeant major. Japan surrenders on 14 August.

1946 Ted leaves Austria in March and returns to London. Pat leaves the ATS on the same day that Ted arrives in Aldershot. In August, Ted’s service with the army ends. He returns to work at Gieves & Hawkes. In October Pat and Ted are married at Corpus Christi Roman Catholic church in Brixton.

1947 Pat and Ted move to Farnham Common in March. Marian Patricia O’Sullivan is born on 4 August.

1949 Bernard John O’Sullivan is born on 16 December.

1952 Catherine Ellen O’Sullivan is born on 31 March.

1955 Edmund Gerard O’Sullivan is born on 12 February. Pat and Ted move to 240 Farnham Road, Slough.

1958 Stephen James O’Sullivan is born on 17 September.

1961 Ted O’Sullivan becomes group scoutmaster for the 9th Slough in January.

1962 Richard William O’Sullivan is born on 6 January. The 9th Slough Scouts hold a two-week camp near Newgale in August.

1963 Ted O’Sullivan leads the second annual 9th Slough Scout Camp at Charmouth in August.

1965 Ted O’Sullivan leaves the news agency business in February and the O’Sullivan family move to 102 Oatlands Drive, Slough.

1966 Ted O’Sullivan starts at St Mary’s Teachers’ Training College in September.

1969 Ted O’Sullivan completes his teacher training and starts work at St Anthony’s Roman Catholic Primary School in September.

1972 Kirsten Frances McLain, Pat and Ted’s first grandchild, is born.

1974 Ted O’Sullivan receives an Open University bachelor’s degree. Gavin George McLain is born.

1975 Bernard Graham O’Sullivan, son of Bernard and Linda O’Sullivan, is born.

1976 Andrew Edmund McLain is born.

1977 Michelle Patricia O’Sullivan is born.

1980 David Edmund O’Sullivan is born.

1983 Euan, son of Gerard O’Sullivan, is born.

1984 Pat and Ted O’Sullivan retire.

1992 Taylor Joanne Johnson is born.

2002 Hayley Patricia Johnson joins the family.

2003 Jack Romanin, Pat and Ted’s first great-grandchild, is born.

2005 Lauren Romanin, Pat and Ted’s second great-grandchild, is born.

2007 Owen McLain, Pat and Ted’s third great-grandchild, is born. Ted’s book All My Brothers is published to coincide with Pat and Ted’s 61st wedding anniversary in October.

2008 Catherine O’Sullivan marries Roger Gibbons in August. Pat and Ted’s fourth great-grandchild Ethan Dennehy, is born in August.

2009 Ted O’Sullivan turns 90 on 28 February. Ted O’Sullivan dies on Ascension Day, 24 May, and is buried at Slough Cemetery on 4 June. Lilian McLain, Pat and Ted’s fifth great grandchild is born in November.

2013 Pat O’Sullivan dies on 20th March at the age of 93 years and 8 months, and is buried with Ted on 4th April. Catherine dies on 2nd July in Devon.

2014 Marlow Catherine McLain is born in January .

2016 Harry O’Sullivan is born in June.

2017 Henley McLain is born in July. Leah Rabbatts is born in December.

2018 Jack O’Sullivan is born in April.

To Be Continued….


 

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