No. 2482, 29th Division Cyclist Corps, transferred to
No. 25195, 2nd Battalion, South Wales Borderers
Died as the result of an accident on Sunday 28 May 1916 (aged 24)
Auchonvillers Military Cemetery, France (Grave II. A. 24)
Newtownards and District War Memorial
Journey of Remembering Belfast Book of Honour
Robert Lennon was born on 15 January 1892 at 53 Clementine Street, Belfast and he was a son of James and Agnes Lennon (nee Kinghan) who were married on 27 September 1890 in Kilmore Presbyterian Church, Crossgar. James Lennon from Belfast was a son of Andrew Lennon, a farmer. Agnes Kinghan (aged 19) from Crossgar was a daughter of James Kinghan, a merchant.
James Lennon worked as a hotel boots and he and Agnes had at least three children:
Robert (born 15 January 1892 at 53 Clementine Street, Belfast)
Samuel (born prematurely 25 September 1893 at 108 Blythe Street, Belfast; died of debility 3 October 1893)
Elizabeth (Lizzie, born 11 December 1894 at 43 Hopewell Street, Belfast)
Their father, James, died of bronchitis on 4 February 1895 (aged 24) and their mother, Agnes, remarried on 16 December 1905 in Trinity Church of Ireland Church Belfast. Agnes Ann Lennon, a widow, from 42 Rowland Street, Belfast married William Hayes, a widower, from 42 Rowland Street, Belfast. William Hayes worked as a smith’s helper and he was a son of William Hayes, a traveller.
In 1911 Robert Lennon was living at 11 John Street, Newtownards with his sister Lizzie and his grandparents James and Rachael Kinghan (spelt Kingham in a newspaper notice).
Before the Great War James Kinghan worked as a fireman in a saw-mill and Robert Lennon worked as a packer in a linen warehouse.
Robert Lennon enlisted in Belfast and served with the 1st Battalion Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (No. 10195) and the 29th Divisional Cyclist Corps (No. 2482) before being transferred to the 2nd Battalion South Wales Borderers (No. 25195).
Private Robert Lennon was killed accidentally in France on 28 May 1916 and his sister, Elizabeth Finlay, together with his grandmother, Rachael Kinghan, and his uncle, Robert Kinghan, placed a For King and Country notice in the 15 July edition of the Newtownards Chronicle.
The following year his sister Lizzie and his brother-in-law William James Finlay (on active service) from Rubane, Kircubbin placed an Our Heroes – In Memoriam notice in the Newtownards Chronicle and it contained the verse:
Peaceful be your rest, dear brother,
Tis sweet to breathe your name;
In life we loved you very dear,
In death we do the same.
Private Robert Lennon was 24 when he died and he was buried in Auchonvillers Military Cemetery, France. He left his property and effects to his mother, Mrs Agnes Hayes, and to his sister, Mrs Elizabeth Finlay.
In one newspaper report his address was given as 38 Bentham Street, Belfast.
Private Robert Lennon is commemorated on Newtownards and District War Memorial and in the booklet produced for the Unveiling and Dedication Ceremony held on 26 May 1934 he is described as a Rifleman in the Royal Irish Rifles.
Private Robert Lennon is also commemorated in the Belfast Book of Honour (Page 338).