My brother Victor Moore was born on 13th October 1927. He enlisted in the 1st Battalion Irish Guards on 31st July 1945 at Belfast, as a boy entrant aged just 17. At the time he was an apprentice motor mechanic with Wrights garage in Banbridge. The company kindly allowed him to resume his apprenticeship after his army service was completed. He was 5 feet 11inches tall when he joined the army, and 6 feet 2 inches when he was demobbed. His first posting after enlistment was to Caterham Surrey England. It is difficult to figure out when and where he was posted to after that, but from the 10th March 1947 to 15th June 1947 he was in Port Said, Gaza and El-Ballah. I always knew that he was in Palestine, for when I was a little girl, (he was eleven years older then me) I remember him bringing me a bracelet home made up of all the Palestinian coins. I understand his name is on the roll of honour in Banbridge Council House for World War II service. When he was demobbed Banbridge Council presented him with a certificate and £25 which he promptly gave to our mother to help raise the rest of his younger siblings. As you can imagine £25 was a huge amount of money in those days and it was put to very good use in feeding and clothing us all.
On the 15th June 1947 Victor fractured his right ankle whilst on duty. He was discharged from hospital at Nathanya on 20th September 1947. The commanding officer commented that he was not to blame even though he was on duty. He received an honourable discharge (time completed) on 7th May 1948 (but of course was in the territorial Reserves until 10th February 1954 when he was released.) He was awarded the G.S.M. & Clasp Palestine Medal 1945-1948.
The one story that sticks out in my mind was the first winter he was in England. He was always a very sound sleeper. Some of his comrades played a prank on him one very snowy winter night. They picked up his bed and carried it outside. They thought that he would soon wake up and bring his bed inside again. Not Victor, he slept all night out in the snow. When he woke up the next morning there was 6 inches of snow on his bedclothes. He was none the worse for his chilly bedroom but his comrades never did it again in case he would catch pneumonia!
I know that Victor was deeply involved with the British Legion in Gilford. I am pretty sure that he was the president of the Gilford branch of the British Legion. I know that he came to British Legion conferences over here in England as he used to call with me in Staffordshire before heading back to Ireland again.
I do know that he was very well liked and highly respected wherever he was and he travelled the length and breadth of Ireland in his post-army younger years hunting and fishing. He died very suddenly on New Year’s Day 2001, and his funeral amazed me, it was so very well attended.