Francis McAteer was born in Liverpool, Lancashire in 1882, the son of Francis and Mary McAteer. He married Mary Donald in 1903, and they lived at 33 Charlotte Street, Warrenpoint, County Down, Northern Ireland. Francis lodged at 62 Dublin Street, Liverpool when he was in the city between voyages.
He signed on as a fireman in the Engineering Department on board the Lusitania at Liverpool on 12 April 1915. As a fireman, his monthly rate of pay was £6-10s.0d (£6.50). He reported for duty at 8am on 17 April before the
Lusitania left the River Mersey for the last time, bound for New York. He had served on the liner before.
Francis did not survive the sinking three weeks later. He was aged 33 years.
As his body was never recovered from the sea and identified, he has no known grave, so he is comemmorated on the Mercantile Marine War Memorial at Tower Hill, London.
In August 1915 his widow was sent the balance of pay owing to him for the liner’s final voyage. In keeping with all crew members, this pay was reckoned from 17 April to 8 May, 24 hours after the liner had sunk. The Liverpool and London War Risks Insurance Association Limited also granted a yearly pension to Mary McAteer to compensate her for the loss of her husband, which amounted to £56-2s-1d (£56.10½) payable at the rate of £4-11s-11d (£4.59½) per month.
1911 Census of Ireland, Commonwealth War Grave Commission, Cunard Records, PRO BT 100/345, UniLiv. PR 13/24, PRO BT 334.