Sergeant George Francis Van Maanen


George Francis Van Maanen was born on 19 October 1984 at 135 Drumcondra Road, North Dublin, the second of three children of railways clerk, English-born Harry George Van Maanen and his wife Florence Margaret (née Benson). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at 1 Loretto Avenue, Bray, County Wicklow, with his parents and siblings and working as a clerk (national education). Soon after he obtained employment as a clerk in the Bank of Ireland.

Van Maanen enlisted in the North Irish Horse between 7 and 12 December 1916 (No.2322 – later Corps of Hussars No.71754). He trained at the regiment's Antrim reserve depot before embarking for France in March 1917, where he was posted to one of the squadrons of the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment, seeing service on the Arras front and in Belgium.

Later that year Van Maanen was attached to the 1/4 Battalion, South Lancashire Regiment, during the Battle of Ypres (Passchendaele). In August he contracted blood poisoning and was evacuated to the UK for treatment.

Following his recovery Van Maanen returned to the North Irish Horse at Antrim, where he remained until the end of the war. On 7 February 1919 he was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve.

After the war Van Maanen returned to Dublin and resumed work with the Bank of Ireland. On 23 August 1923 he married magistrate's daughter Dorothy May Newell in Christchurch, Kingstown, Dublin. He died in Bank of Ireland House, Enniscorthy, County Wexford, on 18 January 1952.