Private James Robert Straney


James Robert Straney was born on 27 March 1890 at Grange, Downpatrick, County Down, the first of three children of farm labourer William John Straney and his wife Harriett (nee Telford). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living at Hollymount, County Down, with his parents and siblings and working as a farm labourer.

Straney enlisted in the North Irish Horse between 25 August and 17 October 1913 (No.867 – later Corps of Hussars 71139). He embarked for France with A Squadron on 17 August 1914, seeing action on the retreat from Mons and advance to the Aisne.

In May 1916 A Squadron came together with D and E Squadrons to form the 1st North Irish Horse Regiment, serving as corps cavalry to VII, XIX, then V Corps until February-March 1918, when the regiment was dismounted and converted to a cyclist unit, serving as corps cyclists to V Corps until the end of the war.

Straney remained with the regiment throughout the war. He was wounded in late August or early September 1918 during the Advance to Victory offensive.

On 27 March 1919 he was demobilised and transferred to Class Z, Army Reserve.

After the war Straney returned to his home at Ballydugan, Hollymount. He died on 16 February 1953.