Captain John Vanner Gilligan


John Vanner Gilligan was born at Reading, Berkshire, in 1878, son of leather manufacturer George Gilligan and his wife Helen Early Gilligan (nee Vanner).

After serving in the Boer War as a sergeant in the South African Constabulary he was nominated for a commission in the cavalry by the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of South Africa. On 26 March 1902 he became a 2nd lieutenant in the 19th (Queen Alexandra's Own Royal) Hussars.

Gilligan was promoted to lieutenant on 3 July 1905 and served with the regiment until he resigned on 14 April 1909.

When the war began he applied for a commisison in the North Irish Horse. He was appointed as a lieutenant on 11 August 1914 and ten days later embarked with C Squadron for France, where he saw action during the Retreat from Mons and Advance to the Aisne.

On 2 October 1915 Gilligan was promoted to captain in the Royal Munster Fusiliers. On 5 May the following year he was put on the half pay list due to ill-health. Six months later he retired.

He died on 27 April 1933 at Churston, Devonshire.