Black, Hector Alexander (No. 1472337)

Black, Hector Alexander (Hector)

Gunner

No. 1472337, 447 Battery, 66 (4th Battalion the Gloucestershire Regiment) Searchlight Regiment, Royal Artillery

Died in service on Monday 25 December 1944 (aged 41)

Buried:

Ballygowan Presbyterian Churchyard, Co. Down (Section E Row 6 Grave 63)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

BIOGRAPHY

Hector Alexander Black was born at 54 Edlingham Street, Belfast on 2 November 1903 and he was a son of John and Isabella Black (nee Boyd), both of whom were born in Scotland.  John Black was from Kirkinner and Isabella Boyd was from New Luce, both in Wigtownshire.  They were married on 13 October 1882 in New Luce Church of Scotland Church.  John Black (aged 19) was a son of James and Sarah Black (nee Smith).  Isabella Boyd (aged 22) was a daughter of Nathaniel and Isabella Boyd (nee Nelson).

The Black family moved to Ireland sometime after 1898 and in 1901 they were living at 2 Skegoniel Avenue in Belfast.  In 1911 they were living in Whitehouse, Co. Antrim.

John Black worked as a dairyman, margarine churner and gardener and he and Isabella had at least seventeen children including:

Agnes (born around 1886 in Scotland)

John (born around 1887 in Scotland)

Mary Anderson Forsythe (born around 1892 in Scotland; worked as a tobacco spinner; died of tuberculosis in Ballygoland, Belfast 25 January 1909 aged 17)

Thomas (born around 1894 in Scotland; died of mitral heart disease at 4 Henderson Avenue, Belfast 16 October 1907 aged 13 years six months)

Jemima (born around 1898 in Scotland)

Hector Archibald McDonald (born 28 June 1900 at 154 Hillman Street, Belfast; died of bronchitis 25 December 1900 in Skegoniel Avenue, Belfast)

Stillborn and unnamed child (buried in Grave A2. 255, Belfast City Cemetery)

Hector Alexander Archibald (born 2 November 1903 at 54 Edlingham Street, Belfast)

By 1911 fourteen of John and Isabella Black’s seventeen children had died and only three remained alive.

Hector Black and Margaret McQuade of Dundonald were married on 11 July 1930 in Comber Non-Subscribing Presbyterian Church and during the Second World War Gunner Hector Black (No. 1472337) served with 447 Battery, 66 (4th Battalion the Gloucestershire Regiment) Searchlight Regiment, Royal Artillery.  This Battery formed part of the anti-aircraft defences around Bristol.

Gunner Hector Black (No. 1472337) was 41 when he died on Christmas Day 1944 and he was buried in Ballygowan Presbyterian Churchyard.  There is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:

THE ETERNAL GOD IS THY REFUGE

AND UNDERNEATH ARE THE EVERLASTING ARMS