RAMC

Medical Officers of the Malta Garrison
Minch John Berchmans

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14417 Lieutenant Colonel John Berchmans Minch
MB BCh BAO (NUI 1914)
29 July 1890 [Athy Co. Kildare] – 8 Nov 1942 [Bareilly India]

Introduction

Lieutenant Colonel John Berchmans Minch was the second son of Matthew Joseph Minch MP JP of Rockfield House, Athy. His father was Member of Parliament for South Kildare from 1892 to 1903 and owned Minch Malt, the largest maltsters in Ireland, at Athy. He was educated at Prior Park College Bath and graduated MB BCh at the National University of Ireland in 1914, and was also a Bachelor in the Art of Obstetrics. He was an all round sportsmen, a fine horseman, a good cricketer and tennis player. He represented Ireland at Rugby football in 1913 and 1914, and at cricket having played for the Gentlemen of Ireland. He was also a member of the Barbarians.

He` was commissioned a Lieutenant in the Royal Army Medical Corps Special Reserve on 15 September 1914 and mobilized on 30 September. He was promoted Captain on 1 April 1915 and took a regular commission on 1 November 1919. During the Great War he served in the operations against the Mohmands and Swatis, being awarded the 1914–15 Star, British War and Victory Medals.

His obituary in the Journal of the Royal Army Medical Corps describes him as one of the real characters of the Corps.

Paddy was one of the real characters of the Corps and the stories of his doings and sayings were many and varied and the recounting of any of them always seemed to draw out the story of a fresh one. Like most Irishmen he was very fond of a horse and did a lot of racing, some of it very successful and most of it amusing, both as an official and an owner in India and Malta. As a rider to hounds he had few superiors, his eye for country, horsemanship and thrust keeping him well to the front. Even in later years, when increasing weight made finding suitable mounts more difficult, he carried on, his beloved Matt, sending over suitable animals from Ireland, which Paddy kept at the head of the hunt. At golf he was an amusing companion for anyone who did not take the game too seriously, and at tennis he and his wife were worthy opponents for most people. As a friend Paddy was beyond compare; loyal and affectionate.

Lieutenant Colonel John Berchmans Minch of Curzon Park Chester died in India on 8 November 1942. He was buried at Delhi War Cemetery. He left a widow and a son.

Service Record — John Berchmans Minch

28 July 1914 Start of the Great War.
4 Aug 1914 Britain declares war on Germany.

15 Sept 1914 Obtained a Special Reserve (SR) Commission as Lieutenant RAMC.

30 Sept 1914 Mobilised to 31 October 1919 (5 years 47 days).

1 Apr 1915 Appointed Captain RAMC SR.

1915–1921 Served on the North West Frontier British India and in the operations against the Mohmands and Swatis.

1 Nov 1919 Granted a Permanent Regular Army Commission as a Captain RAMC antedated to 15 March 1918 but with no extra pay or allowances for the period of antedate.

1923–1927 Served in India.

15 Sept 1926 Promoted Major RAMC.

6 Nov 1929 Birth of a son at the Louise Margaret Nursing Home Aldershot to Dorothy Minch wife of Major J B Minch.

Dec 1930–Dec 1931 Served in Palestine.

Malta 10 Dec 1931 Arrived from Palestine.

Malta June 1932 Elected Captain of the Cricket Team.

Malta 12 July 1933 Home leave.
27 Oct 1933 Returned from leave.

Malta 1934 On garrison duty.

Malta 2 Aug 1935 Home leave.
Malta 3 Sept 1935 Returned from leave.

Malta 25 Nov 1935 Returned to England.

8 Jan 1938 Promoted Lieutenant Colonel RAMC.

1938–1939 Commanding Officer British Military Hospital Madras.

1939–1941 Commanding Officer British Military Hospital Wellington.

1941 Commanding Officer British Military Hospital Ranikhet.

1941–1942 Commanding Officer Prisoner of War Camp Hospital India.

8 Nov 1942 Died in India; was buried at Delhi War Cemetery.

Bibliography