The Sinking of the R.M.S. Leinster

People on board

John Corrigan


John Corrigan was born on the 23rd of September 1891 in Rathdowney, Co Laois to Norah Burn (Byrne) about two months before she married Thomas Corrigan, both from Rathdowney. In the 1901 census the family, headed by Thomas’s mother Sarah, was living in Moore Street and at least three more children had been born, though they did not all live. Thomas gave his occupation as Labourer. The family moved shortly after this to Mullingar in Co Westmeath where they were living in ‘Springfield or Spittlefield’. In the 1911 census Norah declared that she had had eleven children, eight of whom were alive. Thomas worked as an Agricultural Labourer as did John, then aged nineteen.  Two more boys were born in 1912 and 1915.

The family later moved to Tinakelly, Riverstown outside Birr in Co Offaly. It is not known when John Corrigan joined the R.A.F. but from 1913 Offaly was an important base for some of the British Army’s earliest use of aircraft. Ferbane had an operational wartime base and there was a landing ground at Birr from 1918. In October 1918 John Corrigan was a Private, 2nd Class and may have been travelling to England for training or for operational duties. Travelling on RMS Leinster, he did not survive the sinking nor was his body recovered.

His name is recorded on the Hollybank Memorial in Southampton.



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