Fitzsimmons, John Ralston (Ralston)
No. 2368, ‘A’ Company, 13th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles
Killed in action on Saturday 1 July 1916 (aged 19)
No known grave
Thiepval Memorial, France (Pier and Face 15 A and 15 B)
Kircubbin Presbyterian Church
Family grave headstone in Kircubbin Presbyterian Graveyard (as Fitzsimmins)
In some records his surname is spelt Fitzsimmins.
John Ralston Fitzsimmons was born on 23 December 1896 in Kircubbin and he was a son of Nicholas Martin Fitzsimmons and Mary Jane Fitzsimmons (nee Sinclair) who were married on 2 March 1888 in Glastry Presbyterian Church. Nicholas Martin Fitzsimmons from Kircubbin (originally from Clones in County Monaghan) was a som of William Fitzsimmons, a labourer. Mary Jane Sinclair from Kircubbin was a daughter of Robert Sinclair, a butcher.
The Fitzsimmons family lived in Main Street, Kircubbin.
Nicholas Fitzsimmons was a grocer and he and Mary Jane had at least eleven children:
Jane (born 11 October 1888 in Kircubbin)
Robert (born 13 October 1893 in Kircubbin)
Jane (Jennie, born 9 May 1895 in Kircubbin)
John Ralston (born 23 December 1896 in Kircubbin)
James McClements (born 16 November 1898 in Kircubbin)
Mary (born 17 December 1900 in Kircubbin)
Eva (born 24 December 1902 in Kircubbin)
Stella (born 10 December 1904 in Kircubbin)
Thomas (born 18 November 1907 in Kircubbin)
Ellen Chambers (born 6 November 1909 in Kircubbin)
Clair (born 26 August 1914 in Kircubbin)
The children were baptised in Kircubbin Presbyterian Church.
Prior to the outbreak of the Great War, John Ralston Fitzsimmons worked as a tailor’s apprentice. He enlisted in Belfast and served with the 13th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles in 108th Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division.
Rifleman John Ralston Fitzsimmons went to France on 6 October 1915 and he was killed in action on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. He has no known grave.
Rifleman John Ralston Fitzsimmons is commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial in France; in Kircubbin Presbyterian Church and on the family grave headstone (as Fitzsimmins) in the adjoining graveyard.
His mother died of enteric fever on 9 October 1919 (aged 48) and his father died on 18 March 1947 (aged 78).