Tuesday, July 02, 2013

One of the first volunteers to join Chetniks in fighting against the Ustashi terrors in Dalmatia - ILIJA S. ILIC / By son Lt. Col. Nikola Ilic

Photo courtesy of Lt. Col. Nikola Ilic

Ilija S. Ilic as a Chetnik in WWII
Photo courtesy of Lt. Col. Nikola Ilic

Ilija S. Ilic with treasured Chetnik memorabilia
Photo courtesy of Lt. Col. Nikola Ilic

Dear Aleksandra,

As a result of contracting pneumonia two weeks ago my beloved father Ilija S. Ilic passed away on the evening of 26 June 2013. He was one of the first to volunteer and join the Chetniks to fight against the terrors of the Ustashi in Dalmatia following the start of the war. He was born on 28 August 1923 in the village of Padjene the son of Stefan 'Жућа' Ilic who was a commander in the legendary Padjenski Battalion of the DCD. He was selected to fight in the Ljeteca Brigada of the DCD before asking to rejoin his original battalion to fight side by side with his own kin during the famous Battle of Padjene in December 1944. Wounded in battle and decorated with the Silver Medal for Bravery he was promoted to Corporal when promotions and honours and awards were announced in Italy. He eventually settled in England with his father and brother Milos. Initially employed as a miner in Mansfield between 1948 to 1956 he then chose to join my grandfather and Uncle (Milos) in Donnington, Telford where he was employed by the British Army as an Officers' Mess Bat Man and then Bar Steward. He married my mother Ljeposava when she came over with her mother in 1962. They had three sons: Sava who is a Civil Servant; Aleksandar who is a Serbian Orthodox Priest (Proto) and me - a Serving Lieutenant Colonel in the British Army. I'm currently a battalion commander in the 38 (Irish) Brigade - the same Brigade which the DCD met on entering Austria in 1945! My father was a great Serbian Patriot who believed only in God and the Serbian People.

I will never be able to thank him enough for the sacrifices he made for us.

Best wishes,
Nikola Ilic

Ilija S. Ilic will be laid to rest on Saturday, July 6, 2013.


If you would like to get in touch with me, Aleksandra, please feel free to contact me at ravnagora@hotmail.com


1 comment:

  1. May he rest in peace our beloved serbian hero and protector of serbs. My thoughts goes to my dear friend Nick Ilic and his family.

    Bane Simeon