Military historian keen to track down families of Lisburn men killed in WW2

Reichswald Forest War Cemetery.
Reichswald Forest War Cemetery.

A military history enthusiast who is carrying out research into servicemen from Northern Ireland who fought in the Second World War is keen to track down relatives of three Lisburn men who were killed during the 1939 - 1945 conflict.

Andy Glenfield recently visited the Reichswald Forest War Cemetery in Germany, where the three local servicemen are buried.

“Before I visit such places I will note the names of men from Northern Ireland who are buried there and ensure to photograph each headstone,” Andy explained.

“I do this to ensure that these young men are never forgotten and I know that it can be difficult for families to visit the cemetery.”

Andy is keen to find out more information about the three men - Flying Officer George Frederick Alderdice, Lieutenant Henry Wharton Derbyshire and Private John Troy - for his website ‘The Second World War in Northern Ireland’ (www.ww2ni.webs.com).

Here’s what he knows already: “Flying Officer Alderdice was serving with 61 Squadron, Royal Air Force and was flying in Lancaster III ED613 from Syerston to Essen in Germany.

“He was the son of Gerald Leslie and Katherine Anne Hay Alderdice from Lisburn.

“Lieutenant Derbyshire was serving with The Staffordshire Yeomanry, Royal Armoured Corps.

“He was the son of Henry and Eleanor Derbyshire and husband of Edith Jean Hurst Derbyshire and was from Lisburn.

“Private Troy was serving with 6th Battalion The Kings Own Scottish Borderers.

He was the son of John and Isabella Troy from Lisburn.”

Andy continued: “I would like very much to be able to get in contact with the families of these men so that I can send them a full resolution photograph of the relevant headstone.

“I think it is most important to remember that these are not simply headstones but people who have died and I hope that people will send me photographs of these men so that they can be shown beside their headstone on my website.

“This is my hobby and I do it because I feel it is very important to remember what actually took place both here in Northern Ireland and what was experienced by our citizens who answered the call and joined the Armed Forces.”

Anyone who would like to get in touch with Andy can do so by emailing ww2ni@btinternet.com