Acting Leading Stoker 




Royal Navy

Boat Crest
Died On:
20 January 1942


Patrick was born on 2 Nov 1914, the son of Timothy and Norah Coakley, in the seaside hamlet of Ballinglana, near Clonakilty, County Cork, and was one of eleven children.

When he joined the Navy as a Stoker in February 1936 at the age of 22, his previous job was listed as fisherman. After training he was drafted to HMS BRAZEN in October 1936. BRAZEN was a destroyer with the Home Fleet. On 16 January 1937 he was rated Stoker 1st Class, and left BRAZEN in June 1937. He was then drafted to the light cruiser HMS ORION on 17 July 1937, and spent three years in her, being awarded his first Good Conduct Badge.

At the start of the war HMS ORION was in the 8th Cruiser Squadron, based in the West Indies, mostly at Kingston. She took part in convoy escort duties, and did sweeps between Jamaica and Florida. In January 1940 she was ordered home, picking up the ashes of John Buchan, the novelist and Governor General of Canada, on the way, and arriving at Devonport at the end of February 1940. Patrick left ORION around March 1940. He then spent some time ashore, before volunteering for submarine training at HMS DOLPHIN in January 1941.

He passed his Part 1 training and was quickly drafted to HMS FORTH, in the Clyde, in Feb 1941, where he was promoted to Acting Leading Stoker in March 1941. In July 1941 he was transferred to HMS MEDWAY at Alexandria. There is no record of how he got from the Clyde to Alexandria, but as he was not drafted to another ship en route the probability is that he took a passage in a merchant ship around the Cape of Good Hope. He arrived aboard MEDWAY on 9 July 1941. Patrick was drafted to HMS TRIUMPH on 28 Oct 1941.

He is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Panel 69, Column 2.



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