Pagan, Alexander (No. 18/678)

Pagan, Alexander

Rifleman

No. 18/678, 11th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Killed in action on Wednesday 8 August 1917 (aged 31)

No known grave

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium (Panel 40)

Newtownards and District War Memorial

Presbyterian Church in Ireland (PCI) Roll of Honour 1914 – 1919 for

Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church Newtownards

BIOGRAPHY

In some records his surname is spelt Padan, in others Pedin and in others Pegan.

Alexander Pagan was born on 17 November 1885 in the townland of Ballyblack, Newtownards and he was the youngest son of Samuel and Catherine (sometimes Kathleen) Pagan (nee Mullen, sometimes Mullan, sometimes McMullan) who were married on 21 October 1876 in Newtownards Parish Church of Ireland Church (St Mark’s).  Samuel Pagan from Ballyblack was a son of Robert Pagan, a labourer.  Catherine Mullen from Ballyblack was a daughter of Patrick Mullen, a labourer.

The Pagan family lived in the townland of Ballyblack, Newtownards before moving to 39 Mill Street, Newtownards.

Samuel Pagan worked as an agricultural labourer and he and Catherine had at least nine children including:

Jane (born 14 May 1879 in Cunningburn)

John (born 14 March 1881 in Ballyblack)

Sarah (born 18 June 1883 in Ballyblack)

Alexander (born 17 November 1885 in Ballyblack)

Martha Clarke (born 10 October 1890 in Ballyblack)

Sarah (born 19 December 1895 in Ballyblack)

Alexander Pagan was baptised in Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church Newtownards.

Before the war, Alexander Pagan worked as an agricultural labourer.

Alexander Pagan enlisted in Newtownards, he went to the Front in June 1916 with the 11th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles in 108th Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division and he was killed in action on 8 August 1917 during the Third Battle of Ypres.  Captain W. Somers wrote to Alexander Pagan’s parents to inform them that Alexander had been killed in action.

On the day that Rifleman Alexander Pagan died, his brother, Rifleman John Pagan, who was also serving with the Royal Irish Rifles, was wounded.

Alexander Pagan’s father, mother, sisters and brothers placed a For King and Country notice in the 1 September 1917 edition of the Newtownards Chronicle and it contained the verse:

He sleeps beside his comrades,

In a hallowed grave unknown;

But his name is written in letters of love

In the hearts he has left at home.

His family placed an In Memoriam notice in the 10 August 1918 edition of the Newtownards Chronicle and it contained the verse:

May the heavenly winds blow softly

O’er that sweet and hallowed spot;

Though the sea divides his grave from us,

He will never be forgot.

Rifleman Alexander Pagan was 31 when he died and he has no known grave.  He is commemorated on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial in Belgium; on Newtownards and District War Memorial and in the PCI Roll of Honour for Greenwell Street Presbyterian Church Newtownards.