Moore, Francis Raymond (No. 60921)

Moore, Francis Raymond (Mickey)

Flying Officer       

No. 60921, Royal Air Force

Died in a Prisoner-of-War Camp on Thursday 15 July 1943 (aged 36)

Buried:

Ambon War Cemetery, Indonesia (Grave 6. A. 10)

Commemorated:

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Bangor Parish Church of Ireland Church (St. Comgall’s)

Ordnance Survey of Northern Ireland (OSNI) Roll of Honour

Family grave headstone in Bangor Cemetery, Newtownards Road

BIOGRAPHY

Francis Raymond (Mickey) Moore was born on 19 December 1906 in Redcliffe, Bangor and baptised in Bangor Parish Church of Ireland Church (St. Comgall’s) on 13 March 1907.  He was the elder son of Dr Robert Lee (Bob) Moore JP and his second wife, Mrs Frances Moore (nee Gill) who lived at Redcliffe, 10-12 Seacliff Road, Bangor (where Dr Moore also had his Surgery) and later at 62 Ward Avenue, Bangor.  Dr Bob Moore contributed a regular series of Ulsterisms, riddles and rhymes to the columns of the County Down Spectator newspaper.

Dr Bob Moore had previously been married to his cousin, Jemima (Mima) Moore.  They were married on 2 January 1889 in Ballymacarrett Parish Church of Ireland Church (St. Patrick’s), Belfast and they had at least five children, all of whom were baptised in Bangor Parish Church (St. Comgall’s):

James Ernest (Jim, born 12 November 1891 in Kerrsland Terrace, Bangor; died 8 July 1962)

Winifred May (Winnie, born 29 July 1893 in Kerrsland Terrace, Bangor; died 1 April 1982)

Ruby Lee (born 17 February 1895 in Seacliffe Road, Bangor)

Alice Isabel (Lallie, born 12 July 1896 in Redcliffe, Bangor)

Robert Lee (born 27 February 1898 in Seacliffe Road, Bangor)

Mima Moore died on 24 October 1900 as the result of a perforated gastric ulcer (aged 43)

Dr Robert Lee Moore remarried in early 1906, the marriage being registered in Kendal, Westmorland.  He married Frances Gill who was a daughter of jeweller Dawson Gill from Ambleside in Cumberland (now part of Cumbria).

Dr Moore and his second wife, Frances Moore (nee Gill), had two children:

Francis Raymond (Mickey, born 19 December 1906 in Redcliffe, Bangor)

Brian Patrick Lee (Paddy, born 18 November 1919 at 87 University Street, Belfast)

Mickey Moore was educated at St. Bee’s Grammar School for boys in Copeland, Cumberland.  After school he trained as a draughtsman and went on to become a quantity surveyor.  After he qualified in 1937, he held an appointment as an Ordnance Survey Assistant Grade III with the Northern Ireland Government Service before he joined the Royal Air Force.

Mickey Moore enjoyed racing his motorbike in the Craigantlet hills and he was also a keen photographer and artist.  He painted several pictures of Bangor seafront and at one point he spent time living and painting in France and Germany – having travelled from Bangor to Europe on a coal boat.

On 1 November 1934 Mickey Moore and Agnes Tate (Peggy) Prenter were married in St. Anne’s Church of Ireland Cathedral, Belfast.  Peggy Prenter was an accomplished seamstress who made all her own gowns, and it was in Caproni’s Ballroom, Bangor that she and Mickey had met.  They spent their honeymoon touring Ireland on a motorbike and sidecar.  They lived in Belfast for a time and then at Redcliffe, Bangor before moving to Demesne Road, Holywood (where they bred Lakeland Terriers).

Mickey and Peggy Moore had three children:

Judith Rosemary (Judi, born 2 June 1936)

Frances Brenda Deirdre (Deirdre, born 4 June 1938)

Patricia Michele Lee (Michele, born 22 February 1941)

Mickey Moore was a keen golfer, and he won the Captain’s Day competition at Holywood Golf Club (a silver rose bowl) on the day that Deirdre was born.  Mickey Moore last saw his wife Peggy and his daughters Judi and Deirdre in 1940; Mickey never saw his youngest daughter Michele.

Flying Officer Mickey Moore served with the Royal Air Force and, when he was posted to Singapore, he took his golf clubs with him.  It was reported in the County Down Spectator that he was attached to the Intelligence Branch of the Air Force when Singapore fell to the Japanese in February 1942.  He was shot down over Java and initially was reported as missing in action.  Then, in February 1943 it was confirmed that he had been captured by the Japanese and detained in Changi Prisoner-of-War Camp on Haroekoe Island, Singapore.  He contracted beri-beri and it was there that he died of dysentery on 15 July 1943.  At that time Mickey’s wife Peggy and their three young daughters were living in Demesne Road, Holywood.

In 1959 Judi Moore moved to Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) and she married John Dove.  John Dove was killed in a road traffic accident before their daughter Fiona was born.  Michele Moore moved to Northern Rhodesia in 1961 to be with Judi and in June 1962 Peggy and Deirdre followed.

In July 1964 Peggy Moore married Alex Duff and a month later Peggy was killed in a road traffic accident.  She was buried in Lusaka.  Mickey Moore’s two eldest daughters remained in South Africa and his youngest daughter, Michele, settled in Canada.

When Mickey Moore died, his younger brother Paddy was working as a clinical pathologist in the Mater Hospital, Belfast.  Paddy had been educated at Campbell College Belfast and at St. Mary’s Hospital in London where he was a research student under Sir Alexander Fleming and Sir Almroth Wright.  Paddy Moore moved to Canada in 1948 where he worked as a haematologist and held a senior position with the Red Cross.  He died in Napanee, Ontario on 5 December 2011.

Flying Officer Mickey Moore (No. 60921) was 36 when he died on 15 July 1943 and he is commemorated in Bangor Parish Church of Ireland Church (St. Comgall’s) and on the family grave headstone in Bangor Cemetery, Newtownards Road, Bangor.  There is an inscription on the headstone:

The peace that passeth all understanding

Mickey Moore’s father, Robert Lee Moore, died on 30 November 1946 (aged 84) and his mother, Frances Moore, died on 24 May 1962 (aged 81).