David Hanna

RBS remembers 1914-1918



David Hanna

Bank: Parr’s Bank

Place of work: Teddington branch

Died: 24 June 1916

David Wishart Hanna was born in London on 19 December 1890, the younger son of Scottish parents James Wishart Hanna, a house decorator, and his wife Jane Cockburn Hanna. He was educated at Sloane School, after which he went to work for Parr's Bank. He worked for a time at the bank's London Lombard Street branch before transferring in March 1913 to its Teddington branch. He was also a member of the bank's staff sports club. Outside work, he was a member of the Boy Scout movement.

In October 1914 Hanna joined the army, initially as a Private in the Royal Fusiliers. He was commissioned into the same regiment the following month, and went to France with his battalion in May 1915. In September 1915 he was shot through the foot while out scouting in No Man's Land. The same bullet also wounded the man who was crawling behind him, striking him in the chest. Despite his own injury, Hanna helped the man back to the trench and saw him safely away to medical treatment before mentioning his own injury. He was mentioned in despatches by Field Marshall Sir John French, and awarded the Military Cross for his conduct. He was also subsequently promoted to the rank of Lieutenant.

Hanna was taken to hospital in Etaples, and subsequently transferred to Fishmongers' Hall Hospital at London Bridge. Although it was initially thought that his ankle was shattered, an X-ray proved the bone to be intact, but the nerve severed, and he underwent a successful nerve graft operation. He was sent to the Military Convalescent Home at Hythe, Kent, to continue his recovery. While there, because he could only walk with the support of a stick, he was allowed to use his motorcycle. He was riding it to nearby Ashford when he collided with an oncoming car on a sharp bend, breaking an arm and leg and sustaining a severe head injury, from which he died at Helena Hospital, Shorncliffe on 24 June 1916. He was 25 years old.

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