St Mary’s College remembers fallen

Staff and students from St Mary’s College in Crosby turned out in force to support a number of poignant Remembrance Day events.

The whole college community took part in a special service on the schoolyard to honour victims of war and conflict, and to pay tribute to former pupils killed in action.

Their names were read out by pupils during the ceremony, and a wreath was laid at the memorial plaque in the school building.

The traditional two-minute silence was also observed during the event, and the Last Post was played by sixth former Ben Apps, aged 16, from Southport.

At the end of the service a contingent from the St Mary’s Combined Cadet Force visited the cemetery at nearby SS Peter & Paul Church to place crosses on the graves of seven former pupils who died while serving in the military.

They include six men killed during World War Two – Patrick Downes, Edgar Gee, Roy Massam, Paul McArdle, Thomas O’Shaughnessy and Leslie Smith.

The seventh former pupil is Gerry Weston, a priest in the Parachute Regiment, who died in the IRA bombing of Aldershot barracks in 1972.

St Mary’s head of history and CCF contingent commander, Niall Rothnie, is very keen to hear from any relatives or friends of the men who might wish to take part in future remembrance events at the school. He would also like to hear from any other former pupils – or their families and friends – who have served in the armed forces.

Meanwhile, pupils from St Mary’s were also involved in Sefton’s civic remembrance events with members of the Combined Cadet Force taking part in the Five Lamps ceremony in Waterloo, and the school’s concert band playing at the Alexandra Park war memorial event in Crosby.

St Mary’s principal, Mike Kennedy, said: “We were very pleased to be involved in so many remembrance events in recent days.

“The school has a strong affinity with the armed forces because of the thriving cadet contingent which is based here.

“For this reason, Remembrance Day is a very special event at St Mary’s, giving staff and students the opportunity to honour the courage and sacrifice of the British men and women killed during two World Wars and other more recent conflicts.”

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