Francis Henry Bradley emigrated to Canada where he worked as a surveyor’s axeman. Francis enlisted on 5th November 1914 at Victoria. Private Francis Henry Bradley was with the 15th Battalion Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment) when he died on 9th April 1917. Francis was one of three brothers who died in the Great War
Francis Henry Bradley was the son of William and Jane Bradley (nee Elkin).
Francis was born on 29th December 1890 in Burnfoot, County Donegal. He was one of at least nine children.
Known family: William Bradley, Jane Bradley, Emily Bradley (born about 1882, County Donegal), William Bradley (born about 1883, County Donegal), Fredrick Ekin Bradley (born 9th November 1884, County Donegal), Annie Bradley (born about 1887, County Donegal), Francis Bradley (born 29th December 1890, County Donegal), Albert Bradley (born about 1892, County Donegal), Alexander Bradley (born about 1895, County Donegal), Roland Bradley (born about 1897, Derry City), Harold Bradley (born 13th May 1898, Derry City).
The family moved to Derry city about 1896.
The 1901 census lists Francis as age 11, living at house 12 in High Street, Londonderry. His father, William Bradley, was a tram conductor in Londonderry.
The family moved from Londonderry to Moy. The 1911 census does not list Francis as living at house 30 in Corr and Dunavally, Charlemont, County Armagh.
Francis emigrated to Canada where he worked as a surveyor's axeman. His sister Annie also emigrated to Canada as she is listed as his next of kin - Miss A.E. Bradley, 2109, 17th West, Calgary
Francis enlisted on 5th November 1914 at Victoria. He was 5' 5" tall.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 15th June 1915: a Charlemont Family's Patriotism
Mr William Bradley, Corr Dunavalley, Charlemont, County Armagh, has received official intimation that his son, Private Albert James Bradley, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, was wounded in the right hand on 7th May by a shrapnel bullet, and is at present in a London hospital. Mr Bradley, who is an ex-member of the Royal Irish Constabulary (R.I.C.), has reared a patriotic family. The eldest son, who is at present in Calgary, Canada, served throughout the Boer War with the Imperial Yeomanry, and holds the medal for that campaign. The second son, Frederick, was a leading stoker in the submarine D5, and was drowned when that ill-fated boat sank on 3rd November last. He was the possessor of the medal awarded in connection with the Somaliland expedition against the Mad Mullah, having been then a stoker on board H.M.S. Hyacinth. Frank Bradley, who is at present at the front with the 15th Battalion Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, also volunteered on the outbreak of hostilities and was originally attached to the Canadian Gordon Highlanders. He returned to England on 'Blockade Day', 18th February, and left for the front in the beginning of May. Another son, Rowland, is at the front with the North Irish Horse. John F Bradley is also serving the Crown, but in a different sphere, being a police constable in Belfast. The youngest son, Laxey Bradley, is an enthusiastic member of the Ulster Volunteer Force, and on the call for volunteers, joined the Ulster Division with a number of Moy men. Owing to his eyesight however, he was rejected after having been in training for some time.
Private Francis Henry Bradley was serving with the 15th Battalion Canadian Infantry (Central Ontario Regiment) when he was killed in action on 9th April 1917.
The Canadian Circumstances of Death Register records that Private Bradley was killed in action early in the morning of 9th April 1817 during the attack of Vimy Ridge.
From the Belfast Newsletter dated 14th June 1917:
Private Frank Bradley, Canadian Infantry, son of Mr William Bradley, Corr and Dunavalley, Moy, has been killed in action. This is the third son Mr Bradley has lost in the present war. The deceased was a brother of Constable J F Bradley, R.I.C., Ballyhackamore, Belfast.
From the Tyrone Courier dated Thursday 21 June 1917:
Private Frank Bradley, Canadians, killed, was a son of Mr William Bradley, Moy, who has now lost three sons in the present war. Leading Stoker Frederick Bradley drowned in a submarine and Corporal Rowley Bradley, Royal Flying Corps, was crushed to death by his aeroplane falling and turning over.
From an unknown Canada newspaper:
Private F C Bradley is another local man to have made the supreme sacrifice. He resided in Calgary for several years, and had also lived at Vancouver before donning the King’s uniform. He was a member of a gallant and patriotic family who had five sons serving the Empire. One of them, Fred, lost his life in a submarine in November last. Private Albert, the returned veteran, was badly gassed and wounded in the second battle of Ypres. Rowland and Harry are in imperial regiments, the latter being only a boy of sixteen. The late Private Francis was in the trenches for quite eighteen months and was wounded in the great Courcelette fight. He could only have returned to the firing line but a short time, when he was killed. The parents reside at Armagh, Ireland, but a sister, Anna Bradley, who is in the Remington Company here, lives at the Nelson apartments.
Private Francis Henry Bradley is buried in Nine Elms Military Cemetery, Thelus, France.
Private Francis Henry Bradley is commemorated locally on Moy War Memorial.
Francis was one of three brothers who died in the Great War.
Frederick Bradley was drowned along with 20 officers and men in a submarine which struck a mine on November 14. He held the rank of Acting Lead Stoker and had previously served on HMS Hyacinth in the Somali Expedition for which he obtained a medal.
Rowland Bradley was one of Sir John French's bodyguard but wishing to take part in more active scenes, had been accepted in the Royal Army Corps as a gunner. During combat his airplane crashed and turned over on landing, killing Rowland on Sunday 20th May 1917 at 10.10am
The CWGC record Francis as the son of William and Jane Bradley, of Corr and Dunavally, Moy, Co Tyrone, Ireland.