Elliott, Francis James C de G (No. 3/8725)

Elliott Francis James (Frank)

Croix de Guerre

Sergeant

No.  3/8725, 2nd Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Died of wounds on Tuesday 7 August 1917 (aged 28)

Buried:

Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Belgium (Grave XVII. B. 19A)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Holywood and District War Memorial

Holywood Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Philip & St James)

Journey of Remembering Belfast Book of Honour

Brother of Private William Robert Elliott (No. 8252)

Brother of Lance Corporal Joshua Elliott (No. 17602)

BIOGRAPHY

Francis James Elliott was born on 14 April 1889 in the townland of Craigavad and he was the third son of Joshua and Mary Elliott (nee McConnell) who were married on 3 December 1880 in Derriaghy Church of Ireland Church Lisburn.

The Elliott family lived in Craigavad, Ballygrainey and at 12 Sullivan Street, Holywood.

Joshua Elliott Senior worked as a labourer and railway ganger and he and Mary had at least ten children including:

William Robert (born 12 September 1881 at Craigavad)

Ann Jane (born 10 April 1883 at Craigavad)

Elizabeth Mary (Minnie, born 23 January 1885 at Craigavad)

Joshua (born 29 March 1887 at Ballygrainey)

Francis James (Frank, born 14 April 1889 at Ballygrainey)

Sarah (Sadie, born 20 June 1891 at Ballygrainey)

Alice (born 26 April 1894 at Ballygrainey)

John (born 10 July 1897 at Ballygrainey)

William Robert was the first of the three Elliott brothers to die, then Joshua and then Francis.  At the unveiling of Holywood and District War Memorial on 28 January 1922 their mother, Mary Elliott, laid a wreath on behalf of the residents of Holywood.

Frank Elliott was a Reservist (like his brother, William) and at the outbreak of the Great War he was recalled to the colours.  Sergeant Frank Elliott served with the 2nd Battalion Royal Irish Rifles and in 1914 he fought at Mons, Ypres and Messines.  He was awarded the Croix de Guerre (France), (listed in the London Gazette of 1 May 1917) and it is recorded in family papers that this medal was awarded for saving the life of a French officer during the Battle of the Somme.

In June 1917 Sergeant Frank Elliott fought in the Battle of Messines and he was 28 when he died of wounds in a Casualty Clearing Station on 7 August 1917 during the Third Battle of Ypres.

At the time of Frank’s death his wife Elizabeth (nee Hazlett) was living at 16 Blue Row, Castlewellan.  They were married on 13 July 1914 in St Paul’s Parish Church of Ireland Church Belfast.  Elizabeth Hazlett (aged 23) of 13 Fife Street, Belfast was working as a parlour maid and she was a daughter of John Hazlett, a caretaker. Frank Elliott (aged 24) of Maryville, Malone Road, Belfast was working as a valet.

Frank and Elizabeth Elliott (nee Hazlett) had one child, a daughter named Ruby Alice, who was born on 26 April 1915 in George Street, Omagh, Co Tyrone.

On Remembrance Sunday in 2001 Mrs Ruby Alice Loveday (nee Elliott) laid a wreath at Holywood and District War Memorial in memory of her father and her two uncles.

Sergeant Frank Elliott is commemorated on Holywood and District War Memorial; on the Memorial Plaque in Holywood Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Philip & St James) and in the Belfast Book of Honour (Page 177).