Bailie, James Francis (No. D/SSX 24182)

Bailie, James Francis (Jim)

Able Seaman

D/SSX 24182, HMS Gloucester, Royal Navy

Killed in action on Thursday 22 May 1941 (aged 21)

No known grave


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon (Panel 46 Column 2)

Greyabbey and District War Memorial located on the outside wall of

Greyabbey Parish Church of Ireland Church (St. Saviour’s)


James Francis (Jim) Bailie was born on 13 December 1919 and he was a son of James Francis Bailie, who farmed in the townland of Ballyboghilbo, Greyabbey, and Sarah Eleanor Bailie (nee Campbell) from the townland of Ballyfrenis, Carrowdore.  Jim’s parents were married on 25 April 1918 in Ballyfrenis Presbyterian Church and they had eight children:

James Francis (Jim, born 13 December 1919)

George (born 28 May 1922)

Leona (born 21 April 1924, died of diabetes aged 16 when the family lived in the townland of Ballyherly, Portaferry)

David John (born 3 December 1925, died in a tractor accident aged 13)

Samuel (born 16 October 1927)

Henry (born 5 May 1932)

Robert (born August 1936, Robert’s twin brother Andrew died in infancy when the family lived in the townland of Kilnatierny, Greyabbey)

During the Second World War Jim Bailie served with the Royal Navy aboard the light cruiser HMS Gloucester.  Built in the Devonport Dockyard, Plymouth, HMS Gloucester was completed in January 1939.  The ship was first deployed in the Indian Ocean and then in the waters off South Africa before joining the Mediterranean Fleet in May 1940.  On 22 May 1941, during the German invasion of Crete, HMS Gloucester was sunk by German Junkers Ju 87 (Stuka) dive-bombers and Ju 88 fighter-bombers off the island of Kythera in the Eastern Mediterranean.  More than 700 men lost their lives.

Able Seaman James Francis Bailie was 21 years old when he died, and he is commemorated on Plymouth Naval Memorial in Devon and on Greyabbey and District War Memorial which is mounted on the outside wall of Greyabbey Parish Church of Ireland Church (St. Saviour’s).