The reason I researched this Soldier was because I found his grave in Hawarden Cemetery and I couldn’t find him on any local War Memorial, he must not be forgotten.
Edward Michael Dennan was born on the 2nd February 1910, according to the Army Service records of his father Patrick Dennan, he was born in the Hawarden Registration District, but I believe he was born in Shotton. He had a brother Bernard , and the same source tells us that he was born on the 20th October 1908.
He was the son of Patrick & Anne Dennan (nee Kelly) who had married at St. Mary’s Church in Flint on the 3rd August 1908, but sadly Ann died in 1912.
They are seen on the 1911 census living at 5, Wepre View Terrace, Shotton, Flinytshire. (4 rooms).
Patrick Dennan,27, is head of the household, he tells us that he had been married 3 years and he was born in Longford, Ireland. There is a blank where his occupation should have been. Ann Dennan,23 tells us that she was born in St. Helen’s, Lancashire and 2 children had been born to her and they were still living. Their sons Bernard, 2 and ½ years and Edward, 1 had been born in Shotton. There were two Boarders living in the household, Michael Kelly, age 70 a widower and Labourer for a Chemical Manufacturer and had been born in Roscommon, Ireland and James Connolly, age 66, also a widower and a Labourer for a Steel Manufacturer, he had been born also in Longford, Ireland.
Patrick, Edward’s father, had enlisted on the 27th March 1916 and he has entered on his service Records that his wife was deceased before he enlisted and his children, Bernard and Edward Michael were in the guardianship of Mrs. M. Connolly, living at 23, Chester Street (Chester Road now), Shotton.
I believe that Patrick continued in the Army until the 14th April 1919. I did find a marriage of a Patrick Dennan and an Ann Hughes in Conway, in 1919, so as I don’t know if this the same Patrick Dennan, I cannot add it to Edwards’s story, the same is also with the death of a Patrick Dennan in 1941, so any help with these two occasions would be gratefully received.
The Commonwealth War Graves Citation tells us of his marriage : – Husband of Phyllis May Dennan, of Shotton.
I found them on the 1939 National Register which was taken on the 29th September 1939 and so we know that Edward Michael was not in the forces at that date. They were living at 7 King Edward Street, Shotton, Hawarden, Flintshire, in the household of Joseph A, Fennah and Mary A. Fennah, there was on Closed* or redacted record, which I believe would have referred to the Fennah family, but also there was Edward M. Dennan, whose birth date was the 2nd February 1910 and he was a steel Works Labourer, Phyllis M. Dennan’s birth date was the 12th September 1919 and as most married women on this register who did not have a job was doing “Unpaid Domestic Duties.” There was a Margaret Dennan, born on the 20th June 1939, so only a baby.
* For individual people, records remain closed for a century after their birth (the 100-year rule), unless it can be proven that they passed away before this milestone. Use the ‘Open This Record’ button if you believe that this person is now deceased.
According to the Gravestone of Edward Michael Dennan in Hawarden Cemetery, Margaret, his daughter, died in 1940, (Flintshire (Mold) HAW/26A/79) so Phyllis May had to endure her death in 1940 and then her husband’s in 1947.
Therefore I cannot add a lot to Edward’s story, but the following may be of help. The qualifying dates for the 2nd World War Commemoration are below and the show that Edward Michael only just fitted into their timeline. He died in October and the cut-off date was the 31st December 1947. I know of men who died outside that dateline and they are not commemorated by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission even though they had been wounded or affected by the war. There had to be a cut-off date somewhere I suppose.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission – WHO DO YOU COMMEMORATE?
CWGC are responsible for the commemoration of personnel who died between 4 August 1914 and 31 August 1921 and 3 September 1939 and 31 December 1947 whilst serving in a Commonwealth military force or specified auxiliary organisation.
Personnel who died between 4 August 1914 and 31 August 1921 and 3 September 1939 and 31 December 1947 after they were discharged from a Commonwealth military force, if their death was caused by their wartime service.
Commonwealth civilians who died between 3 September 1939 and 31 December 1947 as a consequence of enemy action, Allied weapons of war or whilst in an enemy prison camp.
Also I do not know anything about what the Royal Engineers were doing in 1947, but the following link may shine some light on Edward Michael’s life in the war. I do know that they were bomb disposal experts, among many other hazardous duties, see:-
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_Engineers – Royal Engineers – From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
BBC History – WW2 People’s War Homepage
Royal Engineers, 1940 to 1946 by Bridport Museum
I found what I believe is Phyllis May Dennan’s death certificate, she survived until the 2nd September 2002 and her last residence was in Flints, Flintshire. Phyllis May was 83 years old. (Clwyd; Register Number: 54;District and Subdistrict: 8031; Entry Number: 11)
I was contacted by (David) Paul Dennan, who said that Edward Michael Dennan was his father’s step-brother and he told me some detail of the family:-
“My father, Patrick John Dennan (born 1922), also served in WW2 at the same time as Edward, his step-brother. My father was in the RAF, in the Far East campaign (i.e Burma / India). He was released from service in 1947.” Many thanks to David.
MAY THE SOULS OF THE FAITHFUL DEPARTED REST IN PEACE