Walter Ernest Mannion (1909-1940)

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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.

Biography

Walter Ernest Mannion was born in 1909 at Halifax, the son of Henry Michael Mannion and his wife Winifred (née Leonard).

He was educated at Royds Hall School and attended both St. Patrick's (Huddersfield) and St. Brigid's (Longwood) Roman Catholic churches.

He married Olive Wood in 1936. At the time of the 1939 Register, she was living at 140 Weatherhill Road, Lindley.

He served with the 1st Battalion Duke of Wellington's Regiment during the Second World War. The battalion was in the rear-guard of the Dunkirk retreat and Walter Ernest Mannion was killed on 31 May 1940.

Articles

Huddersfield Examiner (22/Jun/1940):

NEWS OF SOME LOCAL SOLIDERS

Former Local Sportsman and Church Worker

Intimation has been received that Sergeant Walter Mannion (30), Pioneer Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion Duke of Wellington’s Regiment, was killed in action on May 31.

Sergeant Mannion was the son of the late Mr. Harry Mannion and Mrs. Mannion, 26, Whitacre Close, Deighton, and his widow, who was formerly Miss Olive Wood, a well-known former singer, lives at Weatherhill Road, Lindley.

Sergeant Mannion served in India for eight years, and in Palestine for six months. He held the Military Medal. He was called up immediately on the outbreak of the present war, and had been twice home on leave. He was educated at Royds Hall School, and on leaving was apprenticed to Mr. Henry Hollingworth, joiner and cabinet-maker, Moldgreen. Later he worked as foreman joiner with a Sheffield firm. He joined the Army twelve years ago.

A member of a family well known in local sporting activities, Sergeant Mannion was himself distinguished as a swimmer, boxer, runner and tennis player, and had gained a number of prizes and awards while in the Army. His father was a prominent all-round sportsman, and his uncle, the late Mr. John Mannion, was a swimming champion of international repute. His eldest brother, Mr. J. W. Mannion, is licensee of the Crown Hotel, Westgate. Sergeant Mannion was also a tenor vocalist and pianist He was familiar with several languages.

He had a long connection as altar-server with St Patrick’s Church and later with St. Brigid’s Church; Longwood. His skill as a craftsman has stood a number of Catholic churches in India in good stead, for, at his own expense, he designed and carved altars and pulpits for them.

In addition to the widow two young children survive. The younger of them was born on the very day that Sergeant Mannion was recalled to the colours at the outbreak of war.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

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