Thursday 30 October 2014

Nephew says thanks for POW's message home

Published 25/08/2014 | 02:30

Sile Mulcahy, daughter of John F Courtney with a picture of her father, and Joseph Mort, with a picture of his uncle PoW William Mort, who sent a postcard to his family before he died in the prison camp.

IT WAS the wartime message from a British prisoner of war that never would have reached home if it had not been for the kindness of a stranger who found it in shreds on an Irish roadside.

William Mort (23) perished in a Japanese POW camp in September 1943 but on Christmas Day had penned a postcard to his family that was on board a plane that crashed on Mount Brandon, Co Kerry, in July 1943.

John F Courtney and his daughter Sile found the postcard torn into pieces on the side of the road near their home in Cappagh, Cloghane, pieced it together and sent it to his family in Lancashire.

Yesterday, William Mort's nephew Joseph travelled to Cloghane so that he could thank Sile Mulcahy in person.

The message from the young man read: "I am in a Nippon (Japanese) POW camp in Java. I am constantly thinking of you. It will be wonderful when we meet again.

"The Nippons treat us well so don't worry about me.

"Remember me to my friends and don't worry. Let Edna read it."

The postcard was one of about 3,000 letters from POWs that were on board the BOAC Sunderland that crashed on the mountain.

His nephew Joseph said: "To get this postcard provided some comfort and solace for my grandparents and Bill was never forgotten about."

Irish Independent

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