Tom Collins (c.1916-1939)

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An ongoing project to commemorate and research the lives of those who appear on war memorials and rolls of honour in the local area, who served in the military, or whose deaths were linked to conflict.
Tom Collins (c.1916-1939).jpg

Biography

Tom Collins was born at Hartshead, the son of coal miner Henry Collins and his wife Ellen[1].

At the time of the 1921 Census, the family was living at Moorland Place, Flockton.

Prior to enlisting, he worked for Gledhill Bros. & Co. Ltd. of Broadfield Mills, Lockwood.

He died on 17 September 1939 when the HMS Courageous was sunk by German U-boat U-29 off the southwest coast of Ireland.[2]

Extracts

Huddersfield Examiner (23/Sep/1939):

LOST IN THE COURAGEOUS

First-class Aircraftman Collins, of Flockton

Official intimation has been received by his mother of the loss in the Courageous, torpedoed on Monday, of Aircraftman Tom Collins, a Flockton man.

Aircraftman Collins was twenty-three years of age and the youngest of three brothers. There are four sisters. He was the son of the late Mr. Henry Collins and Mrs. Collins, of Moorland Place, Six Lane Ends, and was born at Roberttown, but was brought to Flockton as a baby. He was educated at Flockton National School and joined the Royal Air Force two years ago after working as a piecener for three years with Messrs. Gledhill Bros, and Co., Ltd., woollen manufacturers, Lockwood Road, Huddersfield, whose employment he left on June 28, 1937.

He was home on a month’s leave in July and was transferred to the Courageous early in August. He was a good swimmer, and before joining the R.A.F. he took a keen interest in the keep fit movement. He was fond of cycling and frequently went for runs with his chum, Leslie Reynolds, also of Moorland Place, Flockton.

Aircraftman Collins was well known in the Flockton district. He was a young man of quiet and likeable disposition. His father died just before Easter this year.

Huddersfield Examiner (30/Sep/1939):

LOST IN THE COURAGEOUS First-class Aircraftman Tom Collins, of Flockton, whose relatives have been notified that he was lost in the sinking of the Courageous, as we reported last week. He was the son of the late Mr. Henry Collins and Mrs. Collins, of Lane End, Flockton, and was one of a family of seven — three brothers and four sisters. Before joining the Royal Air Force two years ago he was employed as a piecener with Messrs. Gledhill Bros, and Co., Ltd., woollen manufacturers, Lockwood Road, Huddersfield.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

  • Aircraftman 1st Class TOM COLLINS
  • Royal Air Force, serving in H.M.S. Courageous
  • died: 17 September 1939
  • age: 23 years
  • record ID: 1084768

Links

Locations

Notes and References

  1. Possibly née Laycock.
  2. Wikipedia: HMS Courageous (50).