Who was my grandfather, and what happened to him after my father was born? We have no idea. Literally no idea.
My father never knew him. Never met him. Was always told 'your father is dead'. We have a name and that is all and we know he was an Irishman. He was married to my grandmother and then poof - disappeared. My father remembers seeing his parents' marriage certificate, as a child. He can tell me details of what was on that marriage certificate, details he wouldn't have known had he not seen it. My grandmother's death in 1955 was registered under her married name so all things point to them having been married. And yet despite searching all the online genealogy resources I know how to search I can find absolutely no record whatsoever of a marriage between his parents. No record of a death (or divorce) around the period my father was born. It's the darndest thing.
I would love to trace his details and find out more about him - from what I can work out he served in the Irish Guard (oh, and that's another thing - I can find no military records either) and that's why he was in England, so I'd imagine his would be an interesting story, but without a rough idea of his age at the time of marriage, without the elusive marriage certificate that seems to have vanished from the records, which would allow me a rough stab at finding a birth certificate, we're still in the dark.
One day, I will become famous, go on Who Do You Think You Are and then someone will work all this stuff out for me.
(And as an aside: why did my smoke alarm above my bed, where I'm currently sitting, and which has *never* gone off before, ever, completely randomly go off for about five seconds then stop while I was typing this?!?!)