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James Naughton

Rank: Rifleman
Street: Nursery View
Town/Village: Victoria, County Down
Civil Parish:
Catholic Parish:
Alternative Address: Drumeel, Balinalee Co. Longford; 6 Brenda Street, Belfast;
Census 1901: Possible at Victoria, Co. Down
Census 1911: Serving with the 1st Royal Irish Rifles at Mandalay Hill, Mandalay, Burma (now Myanmar)
Regiment/Unit: Royal Ulster Rifles; [Royal Irish Rifles, 2nd Battalion, B Company & 1st Battalion, F Company]
Regiment Number: 7006371; [8869]
Date of Death: 26-04-1922
Cause: Survived WW1, died in at Citadel Military Hospital, Cairo
Memorial: Cairo New British Protestant Cemetery

James was born on or around the 26 April 1889, likely in Ballyrahan, near Moat Farrell.* 

James was a long-term soldier that formally joined the 1st Royal Irish Rifles on the 1 January 1908, although he may have enlisted as a reservist prior to this**.  The 1st RIR were deployed to Burma (Myanmar) in 1909, before being sent to India in late 1911, and then to Aden in 1913. They entered WW1 on the Western Front in November 1914. 

While serving with the 1st Battalion he was  wounded at Neuve Chapelle 10.03.1915, and at  the Battle of Albert 01.07.1916. He fought at the battle of Cambrai, and the Battle of St. Quentin, with the 2nd Battalion Royal Irish Rifles. In March 1918, James was serving with the 2nd RIR, B Company, when he was taken as a Prisoner of War (POW) at the Somme crossing on 24.03.18; he remained a prisoner of war until the end of World War 1, and was interned in Limburg POW camp. Decorations, 1915 Star, British War and Victory medals, one red and one blue chevrons, three wound strips.

After WW1, James was sent to Mesopotamia with the 2nd Battalion Royal Irish Rifles to deal with the Arab Rebellion. In 1921 he was sent to Egypt with the now renamed Royal Ulster Rifles, to assist in policing the continuing Eqyptian unrest. James was mentioned in despatches in the London Gazette 09.09.21, where he was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal.

Sadly, James died of pneumonia at Citadel Military Hospital, Cairo on what was likely his 33rd birthday. 

Parents Names: (Possible) son of James Naughton and and Mary (née McCormick), Belfast
Notes: *An alternative birthplace of Drummeel, Ballinalee has also been given. The Ballyrahan address is from his probably Civil Register of Birth. **It is possible that this is the same James Naughten of 4 Woodlea Street, Belfast, Co. Down, who enlisted with the 4th (Reserves) of the Royal Irish Rifles on the 26 April 1906 as a 17-year-old reservist.

Likely Civil Record of Birth (please ensure that the web address ends in .pdf); link to Red Cross, WW1 POW record; London Gazette, 9 September 1921; 

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