Sailor Norman MacLean served in the Merchant Navy during World War Two. He was the son of Finlay MacLean and Annie MacLean of Scalpay, Invernesshire, Scotland.
Norman died on 14th March 1941 aged 20 years old. At the time of his death, he served on board SS Stanleigh. On the night of 13th-14th March 1941, a Luftwaffe Heinkel HE111 of Kampfgeschwader 27 bombed the merchant cargo ship. SS Stanleigh was part of a convoy departing Liverpool, England.
Some members of the crew escaped to a lifeboat but the sinking ship ran into the escape vessel killing many crew members. A makeshift raft of planks and oil barrels enabled 6 crew members to survive the sinking. Another ship picked them up the following day.
Norman MacLean’s grave is in Glenalina Extension, Section D, Grave 1 of Belfast City Cemetery, Belfast, Co. Antrim. His headstone bears the inscription:
To a beautiful life came a sudden end. He died as he lived, everyone’s friend.