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Eileen's Returned Letters (Oct. 1941 – Feb. 1942)

Eileen's Returned Letters - The Belfast Doctor

Eileen O'Kane spent most of the war working as a geography teacher at the Loreto Convent school in Omagh.  When contact with Frank Murray was re-established in late 1940, Eileen and Frank exchanged long letters on a near-weekly basis.  Eileen kept all the letters she received from Frank but, when Singapore surrendered in February 1942, he decided to burn all of Eileen's letters rather than have them read by the invading Japanese soldiers.  The contents of those letters are referred to in Frank's responses but otherwise there is no record of them.  However, Eileen wrote a series of eleven letters to Frank between October 1941 and February 1942 that never reached him because of the outbreak of the war in the Pacific.  All of the letters were undelivered and eventually returned to her.  They provide a full, wartime account of her everyday life in Omagh as well as her time at home in Belfast during the holidays.  The time period encompasses the start of the Pacific war and the Japanese invasion of Malaya.

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