Corporal Patrick (Doyle) Lillis
At a glance
the service record of the first man mentioned in this chapter would
seem totally out of the ordinary if not unique. On the contrary his
record while being varied and lengthy was by no means rare. It is a
fact that hundreds of Carlow men served identically long and varied
years of service.
important to realise that soldiering was endemic at all levels of
Irish society both rural and urban. No other alternative was on offer
at that time and as a result many families had two, three and
sometimes four generations of soldiers in them.
had made soldiering their lives and as a consequence spent anywhere
from five to twenty five years literally anywhere in the world, and
they would have known as much if not more about current affairs in
Johannesbourg or Delhi than Limerick or Waterford and with more
3418 Cpl. Patrick (Doyle) Lillis.
Ballymoon. Bagenalstown. in 1871. Patricks long and distinguished
career began at Wexford Barracks when he enlisted in the Royal Irish
Regiment on December 4th, 1889 at the age of 18. He remained in
Wexford until February 25th. 1891 when he was transferred to the
regiment’s second battalion who were stationed in Lucknow, India, at
that time, the journey being a long one he only arrived there on April
was on active duty on the North West Frontier during the Jubbulpore
province wars which ended in 1898.
from the NW.F. Patricks battalion was then shipped to Inhambagie State
during the South African (Boer War) 1901, he returned briefly to
Bagenalstown, but was soon off again this time to the Rawlpindi and
Phuwar provinces of India. He remained there until his standard
thirteen years’ service was up.
civilian life was not for him for within two weeks he had volunteered
for active service with the British Expeditionary Force (B.E.F.).
Patrick joined the 18th Battalion Yorks and Lanes Regiment and was
shipped to France, January 3rd. 1915. He was to spend the next three
years fighting from Ypre to the Somme and by November 1918 Patrick was
one of the very few professional soldiers to survive the war still
sound in mind and body.
was disbanded on July 27th. 1919., however he was reluctant to give it
up so he re-enlisted on September 16th. 1919. in the Royal Dublin
Fusiliers and with his battalion sailed for Haider Pacha. Turkey on
December 17th. 1920. They returned to India via Port Said and Port
Suez where they took ship to Karachi and marched to Kanpur where he
remained until June 1922 when along with other regiments in that
region they marched to Sagor where the Southern Irish regiments were
Carloviana - December, 1998 No. 46. Page 78.
& Bridget Lillis (her father was Patrick Lillis mother Bridget
Kinsella), John & Bridget were married in the Chapel of Bagenalstown
in 1869, and lived in Ballymoon, also lived in Bagenalstown, Carlow,
Ireland. John Doyle and Bridget Lillis had several other children
also. Patrick Doyle, born 1872, Joseph, born 1874 in Kilcarrig, a
Hugo/Hugh, Peter and James. Their son John Doyle married Annie Russell
of England, John & Ann arrived in Philadelphia around 1893/4 with 2
children - Mary Annie & John Joseph.