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 James Joseph Magennis

Photo added by John "J-Cat" Griffith

James Joseph Magennis

  • Birth 27 Oct 1919
  • Death 10 Feb 1986
  • Burial Shipley, Metropolitan Borough of Bradford, West Yorkshire, England
  • Plot (Cremation location).
  • Memorial ID 13755232

World War II Victoria Cross Recipient. Born in Belfast, Ireland, he served as a Leading Seaman in the Royal Navy. On July 31, 1945, Leading Seaman Magennis was serving as a diver on the midget submarine HMS XE3 towed to the area by the submarine HMS Stygianin in operations at the Striates of Singapore. After arriving at the destination, Leading Seaman Magennis, slipped out of the HMS XE3 and he attached mines to the Japanese cruiser Takao. During this time his breathing apparatus was leaking and he returned to the submarine after completion of his task very exhausted. When it was found that one of the limpet carriers which was being jettisoned would not release itself, Leading Seaman Magennis immediately volunteered to free it from commenting and went back rather than allow a less experienced diver undertake the job. After seven minutes of nerve-wracking work, he succeeded in releasing the bomb which resulted in sinking the Japanese cruiser Takao. For devotion to duty and complete disregard for his own safety, he was awarded the Victoria Cross by King George VI at Buckingham Palace on the December 11, 1945. He left the Navy in 1949, found it hard to make a living and in 1952, sold his medal for £100. He died of cancer at age 66 in Bradford, England.

Bio by: John "J-Cat" Griffith





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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 27 Mar 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 13755232
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for James Joseph Magennis (27 Oct 1919–10 Feb 1986), Find A Grave Memorial no. 13755232, citing Nab Wood Cemetery and Crematorium, Shipley, Metropolitan Borough of Bradford, West Yorkshire, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .