Private John Thomas


John Thomas was born on 18 August 1894 at 33 Sussex Street, Belfast, the last of six children of English-born seaman William Thomas and his wife Mary Jane (née Robb). By the time of the 1911 Census he was living in Sussex Street with his parents and three of his siblings, and working as a van driver.

Thomas enlisted in the North Irish Horse on 1 November 1915 (No.1768). While in training at the regiment's Antrim reserve camp, however, he was found to be suffering from 'vertigo'. On 13 September 1916 he was discharged.

Six months earlier, on 22 March, Thomas had married Jeannie McCarroll in St Stephen's Church of Ireland Parish Church, Belfast. The couple had three children over the next five years.

Following his discharge Thomas lived with his wife and children at 52 Dagmar Street, Belfast, then at 12 Lime Street, and worked as an apprentice shipwright.