After World War
2 many people started new lives. The photo below, taken
in the mid 1940s, shows a scene from a farewell dinner
which was held in the Royal Hotel in Kilkeel. The group
in the picture is comprised of GI Brides and some friends.
Photo appears courtesy of Pat Hudson & Down
Do you recognise any of the women in the picture above?
Do you know where they went? Do you perhaps even know
where any of them are now?
If so, please
do let us know by filling in the form below.
The picture above was kindly contributed
to Your Place & Mine by the Down
County Museum and it also appears in its 2005
Relevant web links:
visit to Co.Down after 63 years
Buildings in N. Ireland
Americans in Caledon Co. Tyrone
more WWII stories here on YP&M
Wilfred Cromie - Feb '07
I think the fourth lady on the right is Lily Nollen of Harbour
Road, Kilkeel. I remember she used to baby sit for
my mother. But away back in or about 1963 in Kilkeel
Town Centre I was sitting on my Lambretta Scooter when suddenly
a lady rushed down the steps and asked my name, and I said
Wilfred Cromie, then she said "I know you." She said do you
remember me? I said sort of. I am Lily she said, I
am just back from America for a short break then off again. Does
any one out there know her where-abouts now?
Samantha Mitchell - Feb '07
I am best friends with Louise Caira who is the daughter of
Vincent and grandaughter of Laura.She always told me she looked
like her Grandmother and I can see she really does. Although
she is not in contact with her father Vincent since a young
girl she has talked about him and I will show her this picture.Does
anyone have email addresses for Vincent or Louisa???
Charlie McBurney - Aug '06
Hi Vincent And Luisa - Yes the lady 2nd in from the right
is my dear aunt Laura Caira, nee Rossi. She is the sister
of my Mother Teresa Rossi McBurney, who well could be the
Lady at the head of the table on the left.
My father Charlie McBurney was the civilian Camp barber at
Cranfield air base during part of the war.Great to see the
photo of her.
Vincent Caira - April '06
What an amazing picture. my mother is [ laura caira, formally
rossi ] is sitting 2nd right on the picture. sadly she passed
away in december 05. she would have been 90 today. she eventually
married my father and they lived in edinburgh where myself
and brother and sister were born. we all eventually moved
back to ireland and my mother and father moved back to kilkeel.
i now live in england my brother in scotland but my sister
lives in newry just 23 miles from kilkeel.
Luisa Phillips - April '06
I was delighted to see this photo of my grandmother Laura
Caira (nee Rossi) who is situated second on the right of this
picture. Her family owned Rossi's Ice-Cream parlour on the
Harbour Road and she was the youngest of the family. She was
not married at this time but was engaged to an American soldier.
A few years later she married my grandfather Michael Caira
and eventually settled in Abbey Park, Kilkeel where they lived
for 30 years. My grandmother often spoke of Catherine Hudson
and remained friends with her as they used to play tennis
together in their younger days. She would have loved to see
this picture so much but sadly she passed away in December
2005, aged 89, just eight months after my grandfather.
However it has been brilliant to see this photo!
Mary Mclaughlin nee Kearney - April '06
It was lovely to see this photo and to see my two aunts in
it mary and sybil kearney. my name also is mary kearney my
married name is mc laughlin, these were my da's sisters. i
have always been told that i am the double of aunt sybil (hope
so as she was beautiful). So harold, if u see this contact
me as ur my cousin... haha... my email address is purplemickdog
Charles Spinks - Margaret Spinks nee Peggy Gorman
- Jan '06
Surprise, surprise - after all these years this picture pops
up. A friend, Elish O'Hagan currently living in Michigan called
over the holidays to tell my mother that she had seen her
picture on the internet at a g.i. bride dinner at the Royal.
I managed to find the site - and sure enough, my mother is
included. At first I thought she was the second person on
the left, and it is still possible, but looking closer, we
think she is the 6th person on the right. Peggy Gorman of
Newry street Kilkee. We came to the states in 1946, my mother
is or was friends with many in the photo and some we visited
here in the states, some have passed on---my mother is still
alive, thank god, and we both have made several trips back
to Kilkeel over the years. Her brother Jim Gorman, Scrogg
Rd, sisters May McCord and Adeline Bradley have passed on
but there are still several neices in Kilkeel. Would certainly
be good to hear from anyone...
Anne Rice otherwise LillyWray-McCann - Dec
What an interesting picture. I went to Dunavan school with
Sybil Kearney, and Mary Kearney worked for my parents I think.
They lived beside the electric plant, later the NAAFI.
I too married a yank who was in the 10th Infantry.
I flew on a Pan Am plane from Limerick.
My husband and I returned to Kilkeel a few years ago but so
many of my contemporaries had emigrated all over the world.
There is no place like Mourne.
Harold Knapp Jr - Dec '05
I have the same picture with all the names on the back. My
mother is the 5th one on the left, Mary Kearney. Sybil her
sister is next to her (or the 6th person on the left.) The
first one on the left is Peggy Gorman.
Catherine Hudson - June 05
I have been told that the 3rd on left is Patricia (Donnan)
Ermilio from Newry Street, Kilkeel (deceased) U.S.A.
YP&M Editor: Catherine - please
would you write to us again and let us have your email address...
would like to exchange some details with you if possible...
Michael - April '05
Third on the left is my mother Michelle Hamilton from Newcastle.
Catherine Hudson - April '05
first on right annie rooney nee marks
second on right laura ciaria nee rossi
third on right ellie curran nee donnan
second on left madeline cole
Elaine Halpert Sperber - March 05
I can't really tell from this photo if my mother is included
here or not, however she was definitely a GI War Bride from
Kilkeel who married my American father in 1945 and went over
to California on the Queen Mary. Her name was Ellen Baird
Halpert, and sadly she's no longer alive or I could ask her
However my aunt Lillian Baird still resides in the house
where my mother and grandparents lived -on Leitrim Hill.
How lovely to see this photo!