Tees, David John

Tees, David John

Lieutenant Commander

HMS St. Angelo, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve

Accidentally drowned on Friday 30 October 1942


Knockbreda Cemetery Belfast (Section F Grave 153)


Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Royal Ulster Yacht Club Bangor

Methodist College Belfast (MCB)

Belfast Harbour Board SWW Roll of Honour


Lieutenant Commander David John Tees is commemorated in the Royal Ulster Yacht Club, Bangor.  In the CWGC Debt of Honour website it is recorded that he was a son of Mr and Mrs David Tees of Belfast.  His death was reported in the 2 November 1942 edition of the Northern Whig newspaper.  The report stated that he had been killed in an accident on his way to the Mediterranean.  He had been home on leave in North Parade, Belfast and his father received news of his death two days after saying good-bye to him.

David John Tees was educated at St Jude’s School and at Methodist College Belfast (MCB).  In civilian life he was an official of the Belfast Harbour Commissioners.

David John Tees was born on 1 October 1905 at 12 Shaftesbury Avenue, Belfast and he was a son of David and Jane Tees (nee Miller, sometimes Millar) who were married on 11 July 1896 in University Road Methodist Church Belfast.  David Tees (born in Scotland), a chemist from 24 Salisbury Street, Belfast was a son of Simon Tees, a traveller.  Jane Miller from 61 Donegall Pass, Belfast was a daughter of Robert Miller, a farmer.

David and Jane Tees (nee Miller) had four children:

Ernest Simpson Lowry (born 5 May 1897 at 94 Rugby Avenue, Belfast)

Percy Miller (born 27 September 1898 at 95 Rugby Avenue, Belfast)

David John (born 1 October 1905 at 12 Shaftesbury Avenue, Belfast)

Elsie Jane (born 7 April 1913 at 80 North Parade, Belfast)

David John Tees joined the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve in July 1930 and pre-war he served aboard HMS Barham (battleship), HMS Skate (destroyer), HMS Excellent (gunnery school, Portsmouth), HMS Nelson (battleship), and HMS Ramilles (battleship).  During the war he served aboard HMS Durban (cruiser), and in 1942 was assigned to HMS St. Angelo (Royal Naval base in Malta).  He was killed on his way to his new appointment, and his death was registered in the Aylesbury district of Buckinghamshire.  He was buried in Knockbreda Cemetery Belfast (Section F Grave 153).

Two of Lieutenant Commander David John Tees’s brothers served in the Great War:

Lance Corporal Percy Miller Tees (No. 16408) was killed.  Percy served with the 2nd Battalion, Royal Irish Regiment and he was 20 when he died on 4 November 1918.  He was buried in Terlincthun British Cemetery, Wimille, France (Grave VII. C. 21) and there is an inscription on his CWGC headstone:


After the war, Ernest Tees moved to the United States.

On 31 July 1937, his sister Elsie Tees married Terence B. Graham who was Assistant Town Clerk in Bangor when Lieutenant Commander David John Tees died.

His mother Jane died on 28 May 1939 (aged 72).