Among the many millions people who lost their lives in service of their country during the period of World War 2, there were 15 men from the Commonwealth with the surname Heenan. Eleven of them were in the army, one in the Royal Air Force, two in the Royal Navy and one in the merchant navy.
The information about these men was taken from the Commonwealth War Grave Commission records which I have supplemented where possible with information from other records.
Soldiers killed in action during World War 2: Britain and the Empire
Greaser serving with H.M.S. Manistee as part of Merchant Navy
Service number 94663
Died 24 February 1941, aged 34
Commemorated: Liverpool Naval Memorial, Lancashire, England
Corporal in Pioneer Corps.
Service number 13039183
Died 21 November, 1945, aged 40
Grave: Leeds Roman Catholic Cemetery, Yorkshire, England. Sec. J. Grave 79. Inscription reads: “In the region of peace and light”.
Husband of Margaret (Wake) and father to three children.
Lance Corporal with Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers
Service number 5949371
Died 31 March, 1943, aged 38
Commemorated: Rangoon Memorial, Myanmar
Family:Son of Peter and Mary Heenan.
John Andrew Heenan
Sergeant, navigator with 70 Sqdn. Royal Air Force
Service number 158378
Died 29 Dec 1944, aged 20
Grave: Cassino War Cemetery, Italy. Ref XVII. C. 4. Inscription: “Eternal rest grant to him, O Lord; and let perpetual light shine upon him”
Family: Son of Daniel and Anne Heenan, of Rising Brook. Stafford.
He was flying in a Wellington which took off from Tortorella to carry out a supply drop mission at Crnomelj, Yugoslavia. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it failed to return.The aircraft had appaerently crashed near Campobasso, Italy. All crew members were killed:
Captain Raymond Richard Lindsay Hawke , Pilot
Sgt Donald Thayre, Air Bomber
Sgt Raymond Leslie Cundy, W.Op./Air Gunner
Sgt James Bernard Mulholland,(Air Gnr.)
, killing all the crew.
All are buried Cassino War Cemetery, Italy.
Additional source: http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/
Thomas Michael Halpin Heenan
Able seaman with H.M. Submarine Parthian, Royal Navy
Service number: C/JX 208177
Died 11 August, 1943
Commemorated: Chatham Naval Memorial, Kent
Family: Son of Thomas and Margaret E. Heenan, of Benwell, Newcastle-on-Tyne, England.
Read more about this seaman by visiting my blog article
Esbert Eric Heenan
Private with the 22nd (motor) Bn of the New Zealand Infantry
Service number 36174
Died 24 October 1942, aged 27
Grave: El Alamein War Cemetery, Egypt. Ref I.E.23
Family: Son of Garth Eric Vaughan Heenan and of Rosalie Ida Grace Heenan (nee Becker), of Nukualofa, Tonga, Friendly Islands.
Read Eric’s story here
Engineman on H.M. Trawler Stella Capella, part of the Royal Naval Patrol service
Died 19 March 1942
Commemorated at Lowestoft Naval Memorial, Suffolk, England
Private in Royal Army Medical Corps
Service number 7406352
Died 15 June 1946
Commemorated at Brookwood 1939-45 Memorial, Surrey, England
Lieutenant with Nottinghamshire Yeomanry, Royal Armoured Corps
Service number 307741
Died Sept 25, 1944 aged 21
Grave: Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Netherlands. Ref 10.A.7 Inscription “Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God.”
Family: Son of Peter and Rose Mary Heenan, of Cottingham, Yorkshire.
Read his story here: Lieutenant Harry Gilmore Heenan
Harold Scott Heenan
Captain in Royal Engineers
Service number 169354
Died 22 August, 1946
Birkdale (Sacred Heart) Roman Catholic Cemetery, Lancashire. Sec. M. Grave 62. Inscription “For you, dear, peace, for us, sweet memories”
Family: Son of Samuel Robert and Jane Heenan; husband of Hilda Heenan, of Birkdale, Southport.
See his story here on the Heenan Footsteps website
John Joseph Heenan
Lance Corporal with A.C.M.F. 101 Australian Motor Regt. Australian Light Horse
Service number V22305
Died 24 September 1942 aged 34
Commemorated: Springvale War Cemetery, Melbourne. Ref 1.R.A.1
Family: Son of Maurice Joseph and Beatrice Heenan, of Casterton.
Patrick Stanley Vaughan Heenan
Captain with 16th Punjab Regiment
Service number 547/AI
Died 15 February 1944
Commemorated: Singapore Memorial
Family: Son of George Charles Heenan and of Anne Heenan, of Cheam, Surrey.
James Patrick Heenan
Lieutenant with Royal Corps of Signals
Service Number 87231
Died 14 April, 1945
Commemorated at Durnbach War Cemetery, Bayern,Germany
Gunner with 1 Searchlight Reg. Royal Artillery
Died 11 November 1944, aged 29
Grave: Paddock Wood (St Andrew) Old Churchyard, Brenchley, Kent, England. Row P. Grave 15. Inscription “Gone from all sorrow, free from all pain, some day we shall meet again.”
Family: Son of John Stanton Heenan and Martha Heenan; husband of Evelyn Rose Heenan, of Paddock Wood.
Corporal with New Zealand Coastwatchers
Service number 148324
Died 15 October 1942, aged 22. Executed while a Japanese prisoner of war.
Commemorated: Bourail New Zealand Memorial, New Caledonia
Family: Son of Edward Percy and Martha Mcqueen Heenan, of Middlemarch, Otago, New Zealand
Read his story here: Arthur Clarence Heenan
Mentioned in despatches:
The London Gazette, 8 November 1945. “Posthumous mention in dispatches for exemplary conduct in coastwatching and communication duties in the Gilbert Island area in the face of the enemy, in spite of overwhelming odds and the knowledge that relief or escape was impossible, is awarded to the following: ….. Corporal Heenan, Arthur C.”