The Sinking of the R.M.S. Leinster

People on board

John Thomas Donohoe

DONOHOE, John Thomas

John Thomas Donohoe was born on the 10th December 1875 in Mulgrave St. Kingstown to John Donohoe and Mary Larkin. John Snr. was a Policeman at the time. John Jnr. married Margaret Belton in July 1911, and he was stated to be a Widower. Later the same year in the census they were listed with Margaret’s father and two sisters, living in the Belton home at Crosthwaite Park. John Belton’s occupation was a Gardener.

John Donohoe was employed by the City of Dublin Steam Packet Co. and while there are only records of this employment from 1901 it is thought that he joined the company when he left school. In 1901 he was employed as a Fireman on the RMS Ulster, in the census he was described as a Stoker, and as a Seaman on his wedding certificate.

A daughter Madeline was born in 1912 and twins, Gertrude and Vincent, the following year. On the 10th October 1918 he was on the crew of the RMS Leinster as Leading Fireman, a job of hard physical labour tending the fire for the steam engine. After the torpedo struck and in the water, unable to swim, he clung on to the ropes on the side of a life raft and was rescued by HMS Lively. He received the British Merchant Navy War Medal.

In later life he lived with his family at Parnell St. Sallynoggin, from where his daughter Gertrude was married to William Byrne in 1934. Her grandson William Byrne has been a champion for many years of the memory of the RMS Leinster disaster. John was buried in Deansgrange cemetery.



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