Thompson, John Gunning (No. 17037)

Thompson, John Gunning (John)


No. 17037, ‘A’ Company, 13th Battalion, Royal Irish Rifles

Killed in action on Thursday 16 August 1917 (aged 20)

No known grave


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Tyne Cot Memorial, Belgium (Panel 138 to 140 & 162 to 162A & 163A)

Donaghadee and District War Memorial

Donaghadee Parish Church of Ireland Church


John Gunning Thompson was born on 19 October 1896 in Back Street, Donaghadee and he was the eldest son and second child of Andrew and Elizabeth (Lizzie) Thompson (nee Gunning) who were married on 12 April 1893 in Donaghadee Parish Church of Ireland Church.  Andrew Thompson was a son of John Thompson, a labourer.  Lizzie Gunning was a daughter of James Gunning, a sailor.

The Thompson family lived in Donaghadee, in Back Street, in Union Street, in Mount Street, in Bow Street and at 99 Moat Street.

Andrew Thompson worked as a general labourer and he and Elizabeth had at least ten children:

Catherine (born 16 January 1895 in Back Street, Donaghadee)

John Gunning (born 19 October 1896 in Back Street, Donaghadee)

Mary Jane (born 28 December 1898 in Union Street, Donaghadee; died 7 February 1901)

James (born 29 April 1901 in Mount Street, Donaghadee; died 30 April 1901)

Andrew (born 28 April 1902 in Bow Street, Donaghadee)

James (born 14 June 1904 in Mount Street, Donaghadee)

Isabella (born 14 April 1906 in Moat Street, Donaghadee)

Robert (born 26 August 1908 in Moat Street, Donaghadee)

Albert (born 3 August 1912 in Moat Street, Donaghadee)

Ernest (born 2 January 1915 in Moat Street, Donaghadee)

Catherine, John and Mary Jane were baptised in Donaghadee Parish Church of Ireland Church.

John Gunning Thompson enlisted in Donaghadee in 1914 and he served with the 13th Battalion Royal Irish Rifles in 108th Brigade of the 36th (Ulster) Division.

In April 1916, John was home on a short leave from the trenches and he was wounded in action on 1 July 1916.  After he recovered, Corporal John Thompson returned to the fighting line and he was 20 when he was killed in action on 16 August 1917 at the Battle of Langemarck.  Initially Corporal John Thompson (No. 17037) was reported as wounded and missing in action.  Then, in November 1917, it was officially confirmed that he must be presumed to have been killed in action on that date.

Corporal John Gunning Thompson (No. 17037) has no known grave and he is commemorated on Tyne Cot Memorial in Belgium; on Donaghadee and District War Memorial and in Donaghadee Parish Church of Ireland Church.