Patrick Campbell

Co. 49

As part of the My Adopted Soldier project I studied the life of Patrick Campbell from Milford Co. Donegal. Patrick Campbell was born on the 2nd of February 1887, in the small town of Maghernappin, Convoy Co. Donegal.His parents Alexander Campbell and Susan Tinney were both from Maghernappin. Susan was in fact Alexander’s second wife as his first wife Anne Jane Kerrigan passed away in 1885.

Patrick's father Alexander pictured on the left

Patrick's brother David pictured in the centre between his aunt and cousin.

Patrick had five siblings, one brother Alexander, two sisters Francis and Mary and one half brother David James who joined the Navy and was involved in the Great War also but survived and returned to Milford.His family moved from Convoy to Milford in late 1895 as work was scarce in Convoy. Patrick’s father was a scutcher, the job of a scutcher was to separate out the impurities from raw flax. Patrick’s family were assigned a labourers cottage in Moyle, Milford, as there were a few scutch mills in Milford.

The cottage in Moyle which is still owned today and has been renovated by Kenny Bradley Patrick’s grand-nephew whom I had the pleasure of meeting along with his brother John both of whom have been an invaluable source of information for this project. John is in possession of Patrick’s War Penny and other correspondence received during the Great War.

Patrick's grand-nephews John and Kenny Bradley and I standing outside Patrick's first childhood home

Patrick's second childhood home now refurbished by his grand-nephew Kenny Bradley

After moving to Milford, Patrick and his siblings began studying at Milford National school, an entry in the roll book made by the principal in 1917 shows that Patrick went to war and was presumed missing.

Patrick joined the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers as a private in October 1914, his registration number was 28880. He spent the first year of his time in the Fusiliers in London and then went to fight in Belgium in the Great War. During the Battle of Langemarck Patrick was killed in action and his body was never recovered. He is now commemorated at the Tyne Cot Memorial in Belgium where I visited in June.

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My name is Luke O'Gorman, I am from Milford, County Donegal. At the time of applying for the trip I was 15 years old and in T.Y at Loreto Community School Milford. Before receiving the opportunity to embark on this incredible journey I was merely a wallflower, I observed others success and sort of just got on with things in general. At the beginning of T.Y I made myself a promise, simply to try... to try to get to know that person or try that thing I always wanted to do. So when it came to my meeting with my T.Y coordinator at the start of the year I decided for once I was going to voice my opinion and see what opportunities it could present. 

I am a strong believer in the butterfly effect, where one tiny action can have a colossal reaction, I believe that day when my T.Y coordinator presented me with the opportunity to take part in this project, had one of the largest effects on my life ever. From that day new possibilities sprouted from seemingly nowhere and changed my life for the better, I found myself to be happier and content with life. Fast forward almost a year now and I still hold that same contentment, I'll admit there are days where it fades slightly but when that happens I simply recall the incredible memories this trip gave me, from my "interesting" 16th birthday party held on our last night in Belgium to hilarious ice-breakers with those who accompanied me on the trip, all of which I would become best-friends with very soon. 

All I have left to say is thank you, thank you to all of those who made this trip possible and to those who joined me on this journey who made this trip beyond enjoyable, thank you to Gerry Moore for creating this project which gave me the opportunity to pour my whole heart into something I care so dearly for and finally I would like to thank fifteen year old me for deciding to do something that would change me and my life forever...

" I'm going to do what I want to do, I'm going to be who I really am, and I'm going to figure out what that is"

The Perks of Being a Wallflower