Lisburn bomb disposal hero who died after VE Day is remembered

KODAK Digital Still Camera
KODAK Digital Still Camera

Earlier this year, the Star put out an appeal from an historian who had stumbled across the grave of Corporal Samuel Doughtery, who died just after the end of the Second World War.

He was keen to find out more about the soldier who was killed just days after VE Day in May 1945, and so were the readers of the Star.

The family of Corporal Samuel Dougherty were in contact with the Star and were delighted to share more of Samuel’s story.

Samuel, who was born to Samuel and Elizabeth Doughtery in 1899, whilst his father was serving in the Boer War, served in the First World War and after the Second World War was declared in 1939, he reenlisted.

He joined the Royal Ulster Rifles, before moving to join the Royal Engineers, serving with 4 Bomb Disposal Company of the Royal Engineers.

He lived with his wife Annie in Grand Street in Lisburn during the war and he served with bravery throughout the war.

He was home in Lisburn for a short time before he returned to England after VE Day to help with the mine sweeping operation in Norfolk.

He served in the Horsey area of Norfolk which had been heavily mined at the start of the Second World War due to the threat of Invasion.

Sadly, whilst clearing the mines, one exploded, killing Corporal Doughtery, just four days after he returned to duty, and fifteen days after VE Day.

Corporal Doughtery, one of the older soldiers on duty, pushed a young soldier out of the way of the explosion and was killed.

Another man was also killed during the explosion, however, one of the soldiers did survive.

Samuel was 45 when he died and was survived by his wife Annie and daughter.

His funeral was held in Christ Church Lisburn, where he worshiped as a parhisioner.

Following his death, Corporal Doughtery’s family received a letter, as many families did, from King George, thanking his for his sacrifice.