516/Gilbert Hine. My father, Gilbert Hine, served on LCI 516
during the Normandy Landings on 6th June 1944. I would like to
know any information on this landing craft: Which regiment did it carry?
Details of other crew members: how many naval personnel? Where it sailed
from in England? My father said it landed the troops at Ouistreham – any
further details available? Is there a photograph of this type of landing
report in the National Archives states it rescued troops from LCI 517 and
observed a sinking LCI which my father said was LCI 533. Any further
information on these LCIs would be gratefully received?
information provided on the above and any further guidance as to where to
find more on the subject will be very much appreciated.
COPP 8 / PO Gascoigne.
I'm seeking information on
P.O Gascoigne who served in Copp 8
and also a couple of information sources cited in Ian Trenowden’s book
“Stealthily by Night”. These are Alec Colson’s transcript of the COPP 8
logbook and his unpublished manuscript about Operation David (“Double
Handle”). In particular I'm interested to know if these documents are still
available to public scrutiny.
Any assistance will be greatly
Thank you in anticipation.
Small Scale Raiding Force.
I have been commissioned to write the full
history of Gus March-Phillipps’ Small Scale Raiding force from its origins
as Maid Honor force
in 1940, though Operation Postmaster to
its evolution into 2 SAS in early 1943.
I am most anxious
to trace the next of kin of Major Gus March-Phillipps DSO, MBE and Major
Geoffrey Appleyard DS0, MC and bar, MA and to make contact with any
surviving members of that original raiding force, cover-name No
Dr Tom Keene
Foot note. Tom's
book on SOE and Operation Frankton –
the Cockleshell Heroes – entitled Cloak
of Enemies is being
published in August 2012 by History Press with a foreword by Lord Paddy
Grandfather was Commander Harry Goulding RNR assigned to COPPs (Combined
Operations Assault Pilotage Parties). He received a DSO with Bar and I
believe he may have been awarded a second bar. He was also a very active
member of SSRF (Small Scale Raiding Force) and may
have been instrumental in setting up this team and being involved in their
operations. We have various documents some marked 'Secret' and 'Most
Secret' and others such as manuals, a newspaper cutting and a 1946 letter
to my father from Laycock. He was a very close friend of Blondi Hassler.
Harry Goulding RNR (SSRF & COPP).
A COPP memorial is being planned for Hayling Island Seafront which has now
passed planning and I am keen to find out more about my grandfather's war
service in these special forces before it is unveiled. If any visitors to
your website have information or can recommend sources of information I'd
be delighted to hear from them.
Many thanks in advance.
Legasee - ‘Become a part of
The Legasee War Veterans
Project is looking for volunteers who want to tell their
stories. As part of an exciting social history project, the film company
Legasee is looking for war veterans who would like to have their stories
filmed for posterity.
This footage will be used to
launch a unique online archive of interviews for use by schools,
colleges and members of the public. To kick-start the project, we’re
looking for war veterans of any age who wish to recall their experiences
in front of the camera for the benefit of future generations.
It doesn’t matter what
campaign or country they served in, or what role they played. The
Legasee war veterans project is completely free of charge, with any
travel expenses paid – all we need is their knowledge, enthusiasm and a
small amount of their time to take part in the filming.
If you know anyone that’s
interested, please ask them to email me giving their name, age, daytime
phone number and brief details of their wartime service so we can
contact them to discuss this further. We hope to hear from you, and
please feel free to forward this email to any war veterans that you
think might be interested.
Dave Player [Telephone:
01992 719363; Mobile: 07881 814 707;
105 Wing RAF. During the war my
father, W J Gardner served with 105 Wing from April 1943 until August
1944 when he was posted to HQ Ship Personnel Holding Unit. His rank at
that time was Flight Lieutenant later promoted to Squadron Leader. He
may have been involved in the use or development of radar but the
information I've gleaned so far is ambiguous. I'd be grateful to receive
any information, or sources of information, about the kind of work he
may have been involved in. Many thanks in anticipation. Anita Cook.
I am looking for any information regarding Canadian soldiers being
recruited for "Commando" units beginning in Canada in late 1940. After
volunteering, training continued in Scotland in early 1941.
I have a personal document outlining the presence of British Officers and
NCOs at Camp Borden, Ontario on such a recruitment drive with Canadian
soldiers volunteering (about 100) from a number of Canadian regiments and
undergoing initial Commando training in Nova Scotia (Camp Debert),
Newfoundland and the Hudson Bay area after Christmas 1940 and into early
1941 (and maybe later).
I'd also like to know how they would've been integrated into British units
once in the UK. I am following a thread of a story which "may" include
Glenmore Lodge in Aviemore or another camp nearby, as well as "another
camp in Scotland" (undetermined at this point).
Glenmore Lodge may indicate SOE involvement, but the source states
"Commando" specifically, not SOE. He also mentions 8 small raids into
Norway in early 1941 and 1 in Holland (the Walcheren area) and that
many/all of these small raids were not documented and the participants
"sworn to secrecy forever". Training was completed "at the end of January
1941" and raiding began shortly thereafter.
Researching the standard Commando records reveals CLAYMORE, but no other
raids during this time period (Feb-April 1941) in any of these locations
which leads me to 1 of 3 conclusions: (1) they never happened (2) they
were CDO raids never acknowledged for very good reasons and required
"plausible deniability" for governments in exile and/or (3) they belonged
to another organization....SOE or "other"....what "other" I have no idea.
A friend of the source was killed on the 4th or 5th raid (a British
soldier not a Canadian) which leads me to the obvious conclusion it was a
composite unit. I have found no evidence of this man in CWGC records or
Any thoughts would be most heartily appreciated. I've been through many
records PRO Kew, Ottawa, Oslo and interviewed all sorts of folks over 15
years with only 2 tangible pieces of evidence surfacing; a letter to me
regarding the details and the results of an interview with a Norwegian
Resistance member in Oslo. I've had other small successes, but nothing I
can hang my hat on definitively.
The names of the two participants mentioned above are: 1) Pte (or LCpl)
James F. Connell (parent regiment: Royal Regiment of Canada). 2) John
Henderson (England) (rank and parent regiment unknown, but likely Pte,
LCpl or other junior rank). Henderson was supposedly killed on operations
in Norway during the period mentioned above (Feb thru April 1941).
Many thanks in advance, Jeff O'Connell
Major Jack Crane – COPP 1. I would like to
hear from anyone who served in Combined Operations Pilotage Parties (COPP),
or from their relatives. My grandfather was Major Jack Crane, Royal
Engineers (277770), who was part of the COPP 1 re-commission that served
in the Far East (Sri Lanka, Burma, India) from November 1944 to September
I would especially like to hear from anyone related to the other
members of that COPP 1: Lt-Cdr Peter Wild RNVR, Sub-Lt Robin Harbud RNVR,
Sub-Lt Michael Pearson RNVR, Sub-Lt David White, Sergeant E Cook, Petty
Officer EA Fish, Corporal Richey SBS, Sapper Hawkin RE, Leading Seaman
Stewart, Petty Officer A Briggs (P/JX 144952), Leading Stores Assistant FI
Wilkins (P/MX 59960), Lance Corporal RNW Kedge RE (1949872), Able Seaman A
Prior (P/JX 19124).
My grandfather also did a few operations in Burma working within the
COPP 4 re-commission led by Lieutenant DH Mackay.
I would also be interested to hear from anyone who would have been
completing their commando training at around the same time as my
grandfather (around June 1944 to October 1944).
With many thanks in advance.
Rob Crane (2010)
Hayling Island. I'm chair of a
heritage group on Hayling Island called Discover Hayling charged with
raising awareness of our island's history. We have been going for 3 years
and, as I delve deeper into our past, I'm both fascinated and saddened
that locally so little is known of the COPPs presence here at Hayling
Island Sailing Club (HISC). We aim to remedy that by giving the COPP story
on Hayling the prominence it merits. I'm anxious to speak to any surviving
members, or their families, for information of interest and to create some
sort of memorial to the COPPists on the Hayling seafront. We have had full
cooperation from HISC, but the logistics of their operation precludes a
public memorial on the original site. I would appreciate your views and
help in making contacts. I have already been fortunate to meet and talk to
Logan Scott-Wilmott. Yours, Robin Walton. [Anyone with information likely
to be of interest to Discover Hayling should contact Robin on the e-mail
10 Copp - Book Publication.
My father George Talbot DSC was in COPP 10 After the war he wrote a
book about his experiences. A copy of the book which is both factual and
amusing about operations such as Anzio, Yugoslavia, Italy and the Greek
Islands has been held in the Imperial War Museum. As his daughter l am
about to have the book published and would be very interested to hear from
any of the COPP 10 members or their families.
Thank you in anticipation. Jill de Angelis.
COHQ Nov 1942 Photo Mystery.
A photo of 34 women annotated on the reverse "Combined Operations HQ 1942"
was recently found in a house under demolition in Holland. Also on the
reverse are the names and signatures of most if not all of them. Who are
these people? Why were they photographed together? What was the occasion?
Where was it taken? How did the photo find its way to Holland? If you can
help solve this mystery please contact us on the e-mail link. The photo
was provided courtesy of Bert
Guezen who lives in Zwolle, Holland.
Parry Copp. My father
served in the Royal Navy between 1930 – 37 and 1940 – 45. After serving on
King George V and other ships, he was transferred to Parry COPP on
21/01/44 until end of 1945. Could you tell me what Parry was and what
number COPP it was? I obtained this information from Royal Navy Command
records office. My father’s name was Able Seaman [signaller] William
Charles Marsling NO: JX133969. Thanking you for your time and effort in
advance. I think the web site is pretty brilliant! Steve Marsling [son] (10/09)
COPP 6 - V F Peter Manning,
Commando/COPPist - Sicily 1943. My Uncle, Victor Frederick Peter
Manning, known as Peter Manning was a Commando during WW2 and also a
COPPist. He was part of COPP 6 and trained on Hayling Island. He took
part in Operation Husky in the invasion of Sicily in 1943. Unfortunately
he never returned. It is believed that Sub Lieutenant A G Sayce and
L/Seaman V F P Manning were struck by a glider that fell short, landing in
the sea instead of the mainland. Neither has a known grave.
Peter's fellow COPPists in COPP 6 were Donald Amer, Watson, McKenzie,
Hunter, Peter Wild, Plummer, Sayce, Palmer, Shorty Bowden, Phillips,
Gray. I would love to hear from anyone who might have known my uncle or
has any information re the COPPists. Many thanks in anticipation. Joanne
LCI 535 - Cyril Neville.
would like to contact anyone who knows the whereabouts of P/O M/M Cyril
Neville. I served with him on LCI 535. I believe Cyril came from
Birmingham. Thanks in anticipation Jack Bartle
Operation Ironclad - Madagascar 1942.
like to ask a question about Operation Ironclad in Madagascar 1942. I am
French and my father fought against the British troops in Diego Suarez. He
was 22 and he will be 88 on 2nd August 2008. In 1941 he left
France for Diego Suarez because of the Germans. He had no idea that
Madagascar was defended by a Vichyst governor. What could he do as a
humble sailor ? These were ambiguous times. He was taken prisoner by
South African soldiers and spent time as a prisoner in England before
joining the Free French Navy in December 1942.
He would like to know if there are
any books about the operation or perhaps some veterans of the action who
would like to get in touch with him. If you can help please contact
François on the e-mail link below.
D-Day; 132 Minesweeping
Flotilla. My late husband, Harry Frost, was attached to 132
minesweeping flotilla when it served in the English Channel during the D
Day invasion. He never talked much about those days but he did say that
the crew was given shore leave a few days after June 6 1944 and he went to
Caen and Bayeux. My sons and daughters have often wondered how they
reached these places. The Admiralty are unable to help so I wondered if
anyone else who was engaged in the same action can give me
any information. I do hope that someone will be able to help our search.
Thank you in anticipation, Yours sincerely, Audrey Frost.
Operation Archery - Vaagso.
My brother, Pte James William Hicks, Aged 31, No 3 Commando, was
killed on Operation Archery - the raid on Norway's Vaagso Island on the
27th December, 1941. During my search on the events of that day, I have
not come across a list of those who were killed. There is mention of some
who performed 'heroic deeds' and also of meetings of survivors, but in an
account of the raid, I have yet to see any mention of the names of those
who gave their lives. I would also like to know what happened to the
bodies and if there's a memorial on the Island with a list of those who
were killed. He was seconded from the Cheshire Regt. His name is on the
Brookwood Memorial and also in a memorial book in Chester Cathedral. Many
thanks in anticipation. Ivy Alexander. (2/08)
St Vasst or Courselle raid?
My father was Hugh Maines and he was a member of No 1 Commando. Before
his death in 1978 he gave me a photograph showing him and a group of
other commandos in a landing craft having just carried out a
reconnaissance raid on the coast of France. He told me that the main
object of the raid was to take German prisoners.
I would be very interested in finding out which one of the two Sep
27/28 raids this photo depicts i.e. St Vasst or Courseulles. As you will
see from the photo one of the commandos has clearly received an injury
and has some sort field dressing to a head wound. If you or any visitor to the website can provide me with assistance
or advice on this I'd be most grateful. Andrew Maines. (1/08)
I am writing an account of the Royal
Navy's involvement in the Suez Crisis of 1956 and I am so glad I have
found your website. My shipmate Swanee Rivers and I (Chick Fowler) were
among those who took LCT 4099 out of reserve at Llanelli, made her ready
for sea and took her to the Mediterranean to practise landing troops and
equipment. Before we left UK all the LCTs were given names and 4099 became
HMS Buttress. When we took her to Suez she behaved impeccably apart from
'taking a swing' at HMS Theseus and losing most of her mast!
Having searched and searched, I had been unable to find any information
about 'our ship' prior to our joining her. If you or any of the visitors
to your website can tell me anything about her 'previous life' I shall be
extremely grateful. [Chick is now in touch with the LST and Landing Craft
Association but would welcome contact from anyone with information about
4099's previous service.]
Yours sincerely, Chick. (12/07)
Royal Marine Frank Cameron; Service
Number CH/X 113013 Chatham division.
I would very much like to hear from anyone who knew my
father, served on LC(F) 32 with him, has photographs, personal accounts,
or anything that relates to the service of LC (F) 32 or its crew.
Information based upon my father's recollections may be helpful; he
was at Pantelleria, Valetta, Malta:, D-Day and Walcheren. Later on he
was on his way to Burma via the Mediterranean when his ship was
re-called to Gibraltar (Cormorant) following the surrender of Japan.
One small mystery is that he had three squares of "silk" (probably
Rayon) with a heavily embroidered Globe in the lower corner. These
'kerchiefs were black, powder blue, and white. Of his chums the following
names are prominent; RM James Proudfoot DSM who came from Edinburgh and
maybe emigrated to Australia after the war, RM James McGuigan who
eventually was a teacher in Coatbridge, Scotland and another called
Information I have received recently places my father along with his
best mate "Jimmy Proudfoot" as the after twin-oerlikon gunners on LC(F)
32, whose crew saw service on D-Day and at Walcheren. It was at Walcheren
that Proudfoot won his DSM when LC(F) 32 was part of the small ships
"Support Squadron Eastern Flank" that were considered expendable
in Operation Infatuate.
Thank you in anticipation,
Bruneval Raid -
Paratrooper William Balloch.
My Grandfather, William Balloch, was one
of the paratroopers who took part in the Bruneval raid and I would like to
know more about the men he served with and to see any photographs prior to
and post the raid itself. As part of this I will be contacting the Public
Archive at Kew and the Imperial War Museum in London but any information,
especially from veterans or their families, would be very much
appreciated. Chris Manuel (8/07)
Merry, LCM 131 & 668 Flotillas. We are looking for information about
my father's war service record. He was Mr William Edwin Merry from Blaby,
Leicester, England. Information is sought about LCM Flotillas 131 and 668,
particularly the names of the ships the flotillas were attached to. We
believe he was in Messina, Sicily and saw action in the Italy and the D
Day landings. Lynda Randall (8/07)
Czechoslovak Commandos. I'm
working on a website about Czechoslovak Commandos and on the establishment
of a Czechoslovak Commando Re-enactment Group. I'd like to hear from
anyone with information of possible interest about the Czechoslovak
contingent of No 10 (IA) Commando or any other Czechoslovak Commando
groups. Sources of information in books and archives and information about
the badge (above) would also be most welcome. Martin Sedivy. (9/06)
HMLCI(S) 535, 201LCI(S)
Flotilla, D-Day Normandy. The photo opposite shows the crew of HMLCI(S)
535, with the exception of one man, on the morning of June 6th 1944 in
Normandy. On that day 535 carried men of Lord Lovat's Special Service
Brigade on to Queen Red sector of Sword beach at La Breche. Former AB
Jack 'Curly' Bartle recalls... 535 was towed back from Sword beach to
Spithead by the depot trawler HM War Wing. Later on we were taken under
tow by LCPs and returned to our base at Warsash on the River Hamble.
During the journey back across the English Channel the 535 managed to
stay afloat at an angle of 45 degrees with her stern in the air!!
Photo left to right back row - 'Walt' Disney, Dennis
Karn, Cyril Neville, Evan Carey, Jack 'Curly' Bartle, Billy Myatt, Bob
Bradley, 'Geordie' Turner, 'Jock' Nicholls, Tommy Kiley & Bill Beedle.
Left to right front row - Ken McCavish, Sub Lieutenant
Rideout, Lieutenant Harold Cavey, Coxswain John Sheered, 'Jock' McTavish
& Harry 'Gunboat' Gough.
I am in contact with veterans Jack Bartle, Dennis Karn,
Bill Beedle, Evan Carey and Jack Burton. They would welcome news and
contact with former shipmates. Please contact me... I would be delighted
to reunite you with your former shipmates. Tony Chapman, Official
Archivist/Historian, LST and Landing Craft Association (Royal Navy).
The photo opposite shows the crew of Landing
Craft Infantry (Small) 508 as they were in May of 1945. Prior to that time
the craft had seen service in Normandy on D-Day when she was assigned '
Beach Rescue Craft' for the 200th Flotilla of which she was part. On the
day 508 and her sister craft were involved with landing Lord Lovat's
Special Service Brigade on Sword beach. On November 1st 1944 508 was a
'Beach Rescue Craft' in the costly assault on Walcheren. The craft of
the 1st LCI(S) Squadron carried men of the 41 Royal Marine Commando.
The granddaughter of Able Seaman Terence Lyons (pictured
4th from right back row in the group photo and opposite) would welcome
contact with anyone who might remember him, especially, of course, men who
served alongside him during his service with LCI(S) 508... in particular
Lt R W Smith, Sub Lt N Barratt, Petty Officer/Coxswain Cyril Smith, Chief
Petty Officer/Motor Mechanic Austin Underhill, Telegraphist Tickle,
Signalman (Bunts) Radford, Able Seaman Bradshaw, Brown, Coldwell, Francis,
Keelan, Macrae, Rathmill, Wilson, stokers Bourne, Grant and Trehearn and
Wireman (Electrician) J A Telford.
In the first instance please contact Tony Chapman of the
LST & Landing Craft Association. (5/06)
Operation Zipper. I'm 81 years of age
and served with REME 24th ABW part of SEAC and was seconded to Combined
Operations for the invasion of Malaya, code named operation ZIPPER August
1945. I would like to know more about this operation and possible contact
of any comrades that may be still alive who served in this theatre. I was
aboard the armed merchant ship HMS Tamele. I'd also like to know about
this vessel and its war time history. Many thanks. Bert Townsend. (4/06)
607 LCM Flotilla, Normandy 1944.
Former Royal Marine Ken Burt, now residing in Australia, would be pleased
to hear from any former comrades who served alongside him with 607 LCM
Flotilla. If any veteran Royal Marines served with the flotilla, prior to
and during the Normandy landings, I would be delighted to hear from them
and to put you in touch with Ken. Tony Chapman, Official
Archivist/Historian, LST and Landing Craft Association (Royal Navy).
HMLCT 2226. Royal Navy veteran George Cooper
served with the American built British manned Mk5 LCT 2226 throughout the
period of the D-Day landings in Normandy and later still when the 2226 was
assigned in Holland. At now 60 years down the road he wonders if any of
his former 'old ships' are still about......if any former crew members of
2226 should find themselves reading this I would be delighted to hear from
you and to put you in touch with George. Tony Chapman, LST and Landing
Craft Association. (06/05).
Operation Compass North Africa.
Can anyone help me with information about a raid/landing in North Africa?
I wonder if there was a raid/landing (not the Bardia raid) near Sidi
Baranni in the days between 8-13 December 1940... perhaps only a few
companies were involved. Thanks for any help and greetings from Blazej
No 4 Commando - Dieppe,
I am a
serving Army Officer and I'm in the process of organising a battlefield
tour for the Officers and SNCOs of my Regiment to Dieppe and in particular
to study the role played by 4 Commando. I would like to get in touch with
any No 4 Commando veterans of Dieppe who might be willing to accompany us
on the tour as our guests. Many thanks. David McNeil. (5/05)
Royal Marines of 601 LCM
Flotilla........Normandy 1944. Contact sought with veteran Royal
Marines who served with 601 LCM Flotilla in Normandy. I am keen to obtain
a photograph of 601 as they were at that time. The photograph is sought on
behalf of relatives of Corporal John Lorden and Marine William
Goddard.....the latter being lost on July 21st 1944 when the men and craft
of 601 were overtaken by a storm whilst returning to England. Marine
Goddard was one of 28 men of 601 who were lost that day, Corporal Lorden
was one of the survivors. If any veterans of 601 or relatives of men who
served can assist I would be very pleased to hear from them. Tony Chapman
Official Archivist/Historian, LST and Landing Craft Association (Royal
of the 48th Flotilla on D-Day in Normandy. For several years I have
been in regular contact with Petty Officer Motor Mechanic Alan Haworth who
was on LCT 1025 on the morning of June 6th 1944. I was fortunate enough to
reunite him with Signalman Donny Manning who, sadly, has since died. Alan,
who resides in the USA, would welcome hearing from anyone who remembers
him or who was on LCT 1025 that day. He also hopes to be reminded of the
name of the man who was the second in command, or 'Jimmy the One,' to use
Royal Navy parlance. LCT 1025 was involved in an attack by E-boats during
the early morning hours of June 8th 1944 when her crew retrieved survivors
from a stricken LCT that sank alongside. That craft is believed to be LCT
390 of the 4th Flotilla. Please get in touch if you were involved in any
of these events. Tony Chapman, Official Archivist/Historian, LST and
Landing Craft Association (Royal Navy). (1/05)
Bruneval Raid - Operation
Biting. One of my relatives by the name of Gough may have been
involved in the Bruneval Raid (Operation Biting). Can anyone please tell
me if there is any nominal roll of the action which I can check to confirm
this, or any other source of information I can refer to. Many thanks in
anticipation. Clark Watson. (1/05)
HMLST 215. Whilst researching my family history I
came across a second cousin of mine on the war graves commission site,
stating that he died on the 18/11/1944 while serving on HMLST 215. His
name was Edward J Bird, Leading Stoker. Where can I find any further
information on him or this vessel. Thank you. (12/04)
No 2 Commando, D Company. I would
like to find out about No.2 Commando, D company in WW2 as my father served
in it. Any information, including recommended reading material, will be
gratefully received. (12/04)
713th Mine Sweeping Flotilla -
D-Day. I am talking to a man who was a Royal Marine attached to the 713th
Minesweeping Flotilla sailing on an LCPL. They were towed to Normandy for
the D-Day invasion by a British BYMS. I have been unable to find ANY
reference to the 713th Mine Sweeping Flotilla on the Internet, and an
explanation as to why the Royal Marines were part of an assault
minesweeping unit, ie: in the US Navy minesweeping is a Navy function. I
am an author writing a book on small boat minesweeping, and will be
helping this veteran create an oral history. Edward B. Sinclair, Portland,
OR, USA. (12/04)
59th GHQ Troops Royal Engineers.
My Granddad served in 510 Field Company RE which later formed part of 59th
GHQ Troops RE. It is my understanding that Royal Engineers took part in
liberation of Walcheren in Nov 1944. My Granddad was a sapper/mine
detector etc Does anyone know if the Royal Engineers actually landed on
Walcheren with the Commandos, and if so, what role did they in fact play
in the operation? Regards, Carl Davies (12/04)
No 4 Commando Roll of Honour -
Mr Sid Smallman. My granddad died in the D-day landings on June 6th 1944.
His name was Sid Smallman and he died on Sword beach. My father has been
to see his father's grave on many occasions during the last 30 years. When
he visited this year during the 60th anniversary celebrations, he met a
young historian who wondered why Sid Smallman's name is not on the No 4
Commando Roll of Honour which I believe is held at the museum at
Ouistreham whilst his grave stone at Hermanville has No.4 Commando
written on it together with the other details. Can anyone help please?
DARYL SMALLMAN (On behalf of his father Brian Smallman). (11/04)
No 6 Commando. I have just
read G W McGurdy's article on his time as a US Ranger attached to No.6
Commando. This is another area of No. 6 that I knew very little about -
despite the fact that my Grandfather, Mr Harry Winrow, served in 6 Troop
of No. 6 during the war - seeing service from the Lofoten Islands raid
through to Palestine.
He always speaks of a fallen comrade, "Jock", who served
with him and was billeted with him throughout his time in No. 6 until
being killed on Sword Beach on 6th June 1944. I have tried hard to trace
any information about No.6 and this exploit adds to my collection of short
accounts that I have been building up. I wonder if any visitor to your
website can add to the information I have. Many thanks in anticipation.
Peter Bowe. (11/04)
654 Flotilla - D-Day. I am in the
process of researching my dad's service history. He was a Royal Marine and
a coxswain in 654 Flotilla. I know they formed part of E Build-Up Squadron
assigned to Force G (Gold Beach) and took part in D-Day. I also know he
lost the ramp on his craft and he and his crew were taken aboard LCM
1188. As there appears to be very little information on this particular
Flotilla, I would appreciate hearing from anyone with knowledge, first
hand or other, concerning this unit. Thank you. (11/04)
SBS in Greece. I wonder if you can help me. I
remember my grandfather, Eric Farrelly, saying he was in the para`s during
WW2 then was transferred to the SBS. He was parachuted into Greece to help
fight with the Greek partisans, who, on numerous occasions, hid them from
the Germans up in the mountains. His CO was a captain Kellis (not sure on
the spelling) but I'm sure all or most of his unit made it back home.
Could you shed any light on this or know anything about the SBS operations
in Greece around about this time 1943/44, book references etc? Kind
regards Ron McLaren. (10/04)
Lake Commachio, Italy. I am currently
researching the action centred on Lake Comacchio during April 1945. I
would be interested to have sight of what has been written thus far, maps,
personal accounts etc. (10/04)
No 2 Commando - Photos. I am
looking for photos of members of No. 2 Commando. Any information, contact
or photos will be greatly appreciated. Robert Bishop MC. (10/04)
Bombing of Walcheren Dykes. I
was intrigued that a Dutch Engineer advised the Admiralty in 1943 to
choose Arromanches for the invasion of France. (reference New Civil
Engineer June 1994 supplement: Mulberry Harbours 1945-1994). What
investigation and by whom took place to decide where and how to bomb the
dykes of Walcheren in 1944? (8/04)
Which Commando Unit?
I am trying to find
out which Commando Unit my father fought with in the second world war. I
know he went to North Africa with Monty, that he was at Dunkirk and
Nijmegen in Holland. He passed away eight years ago. His name was Albert
(Bert) Alexander George, dob 4-02-1921 from Grimsby living most of his
adult life in Oxford. He always attended the Commando Reunions in London
and visited Dunkirk when possible. He never spoke about the things he did
even though I was very interested. I'd now like to find out as much as
possible. Can anyone help? Thank you. Rosalind Susan George (daughter).
Paras - June 5th 1944. On a visit to
Ranville Cemetery I saw graves of Paras where the date they died was given
as 5 June, 1944. I'd like to if indeed Paras were killed on the 5th, and
if so I'd like to know what happened. (7/04)
No 4 Commando - Dover Castle. I
am researching a television programme called 'The World War Two
Experience', dealing specifically with Kent and Dover during the war. I
understand that the No4 Commandos infiltrated Dover Castle's defences in
1943 as part of an exercise. I have spoken to a few of the civilian
veterans who were down in the castle tunnels when the Commandos burst in,
and would like to contact any veteran Commandos from the team. I wonder if
you know of any who might still be around? Any help would be much
appreciated. Many thanks, Rebecca Snow, World War Two Experience, Mentorn,
020 72586742. (7/04)
Algiers Nov 1942. My uncle was killed in
Algeria Nov. 6 1942. We were told he was a US Ranger but I found out he
was in No 6 Commando. The historian for the 34th Division informed me that
some 300 men were made into two Commando companies by request of the
British commandos. In the mid-1940's the circumstances of my uncle's
death, as described by a US Ranger, did not fit the official record the
historian had on him (my uncle). All very confusing and all the more so
since it's not generally known that US Rangers served under British
control. Is there any good source for this information on this? (6/04)
Dieppe Raid -
Francis S Parker. I am a radio journalist based in Chicago, and the
daughter of a Dieppe survivor. I'm collecting information for a radio
documentary about Dieppe--framed by his experience there and afterwards,
as a POW. My father, Francis S. Parker, is an American who enlisted in
the Black Watch in 1940; after training in Canada and England, Dieppe was
the only action he saw. He was in the third wave of landing craft and so
missed the worst of the action, but was captured on the beach and spent
three years in various prison camps in Germany and what is now Poland, but
then was also Pomerania, etc. Along with other camps, he was in Stalag 8b,
if that rings any bells for anyone. After more than one try, he escaped
shortly before liberation. He is now 88 and is in the advanced stages of
Parkinson's disease, and lives near Boston, his and my hometown.
I'm interested in corroborating some of his accounts of
that day....and in hearing any other accounts from any Dieppe
survivors--possibly even Black Watch?! Anyone recall meeting him? In his
non-military life he was/is a painter, and spoke French and some German so
he did a lot of translating. I'm grateful for any and all
information....Many thanks, Diantha Parker. (6/04)
4th Commando (RM) Signal Troop.
I know my late Father was at the D-Day landings and also at Walcheren. I
know he carried the radio at Walcheren but I have very little info, as to
where he trained etc. He enlisted into the Army but was discharged by the
Navy. Can anyone help? His name was Alan Green : His service No was
PLY/X111456. He was from Manchester. He never spoke about WW2. (6/04)
Petworth, West Sussex. I am
researching the units around Petworth, West Sussex during WW2 and would be
most grateful to hear from anybody who was based in the area or anyone who
has information on the units based here. (6/04)
42 Commando 1941-46. I think my father
served with them during the second world war from 1941-46. Would very much
like to have information about them. Thank you, Carol Field. (6/04)
4th Commando Brigade (RM) Signal Troop.
I am researching into my father's military exploits as a young man of 18.
I have very little information as he never spoke about it although he was
very traumatised. My information to date is very vague. He made an annual
pilgrimage to Walcheren for many years until ill health took its toll.
Please can anyone give me information or tell me where to look. Are there
any veterans or relatives of veterans who can contact me. (5/04)
Vis & Brac June 1944. My father,
Edwin Martin, was a marine assigned to Combined Ops in the Adriatic during
1944-45. We are travelling to the island of Brac on June 5th - 60 years
since he was there. This will be his first trip back & it will be very
emotional. We will be visiting his base on Vis but I would really like to
know where he landed on June 3rd 1944. I know it was an attack on 'Point
622' (part of Operation Flounced) but so far have been unable to pinpoint
the landing area. Also he would love to hear from any ex colleagues. Many
thanks and kind regards. Stephen Martin. (5/04)
Cockle Shell heroes in Bordeaux.
I understand there are a few memorials around the Bordeaux area dedicated
to the Cockleshell Heros. I would like to visit these and would appreciate
any information on locations. Many thanks. Dianne Harris. (5/04)
1126th M.P. CO. AVN.
Can anyone tell me
anything about the Army/Air-force Military Police in the Philippines in
1945? What did they do and who were they assigned to? My father, Herman E
Gainer, (may have been known as Hank) who served with them, would be
interested to hear from anyone who knew him. (5/04)