World War Two

 

Albert Victor Riley, 1916-1942

Husband of 4th cousin once removed (Maternal)

Born 22 Jan 1916 in Riccall, Yorkshire, England to John Arthur Riley and Esther Louisa Dale. He was a Labourer in a Flour Mill and was married to Joan Marie Jaquest and they had two sons the first of which died in infancy. Albert served as a Private with the Gordon Highlanders in the Middle East and was killed on 3 Nov 1942 aged 26. He was buried at El Alamein War Cemetery and his headstone reads “FOREVER IN OUR THOUGHTS. UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN”.

Arthur Goldson, 1914-1944

3rd cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Arthur was one of ten children born to Charles Frederick Goldson and Harriett Gertrude Prescott. He was born on 9 May 1914 in Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England. He was a Baker’s Roundsman and married to Constance May Wakelen with whom he had two children. He served with the 1st Batt. of the Somerset Light Infantry and lost his life at age 29 whilst in that service on 5 May 1944 in India. He was buried at Karachi War Cemetery in Pakistan.

Clifford Tuck, 1910-1941

Brother-in-law of 4th cousin 4 times removed (Paternal)

Clifford Tuck was one of nine children born to Sydney Tuck and Bertha Graham. He was born 17 July 1910 in Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire, England and was married to Mabel Boast. He was a Labourer in the Cotton Mills but during the war served as a Bombadier with the 437 Bty. 62 (4th Bn. The Loyal Regt. [North Lancashire]) Searchlight Regment of the Royal Artillery. He died on 26 May 1941 and he was buried in Preston Cemetery in England leaving behind 3 young children.

Connell Gavin Elsley, 1925-1945

Stepson of 4th cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Connell Gavin (or Gaven/Gavan/Gavon depending on which record you are reading) was born on 29 Jun 1925 in Stockton, New South Wales, Australia to Harold George William Elsley and Valzie Mary Colless. He served with the 25th Batt. of the Australian Infantry and lost his life on 13 Apr 1945 at Bougainville in Papua New Guinea. He was aged just 19 years old at the time and he was buried at Port Moresby War Cemetery in Papua New Guinea where the inscription on his headstone reads “HIS DUTY NOBLY DONE EVER REMEMBERED”. He is also named on his father’s memorial in Mudgee General Cemetery in Australia for which there is an image included above.

Edward Arthur Hayward, 1924-1944

1st cousin twice removed of ex-husband

Edward Arthur Hayward was born in West Ham, Essex, England to Charles Nicholas Hayward and Eva Blumsum and he was the younger of two brothers in that family. He served as a Gunner in the Royal Artillery and was killed on 11 Nov 1944 at 20 years of age. He was buried at Florence War Cemetery in Italy and his headstone bears the inscription “WE MUST LIVE JUST FOR TOMORROW TRUSTING WE SHALL MEET AGAIN. MUM, DAD AND BROTHER FRANK”.

Frederick Scott, 1916-1944

1st cousin twice removed of 4th Great Aunt (Maternal)

Born 19 Jul 1916 in St Asaph, Denbighshire, Wales to Frederick John Bertram Scott and his second wife Margaret Ellen Mellor. He was their youngest son who worked as a General Labourer. He served in the Army as a Fusilier with the 7th Batt. of the Royal Welch Fusiliers and was killed in action sometime between the 16th and 17th July 1944 aged 28. His remains were buried at La Delivrande War Cemetery in France.

Frank Neal, 1921-1941

Stepson of 3rd cousin 3 times removed (Maternal)

Very little is known of Frank prior to his military service other than he was born in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, England to Septimus Neal and Sarah Anne Everatt and was one of eight children but had a further four half-siblings from his father’s first marriage to Annie Elizabeth Harrison. He served as a Private with the Queen’s Own Cameron Highlanders and was sadly killed in action on 15 Mar 1941 in South Africa at just 20 years of age. His remains lie in Keren War Cemetery in Eritrea and his headstone bears the inscription “IN LOVING MEMORY OF A DEAR SON AND BROTHER WHO GAVE HIS LIFE FOR US ALL”.

George Edward Jones, 1917-1942

Husband of 1st cousin twice removed (Paternal)

Born in 1817 to George and Ivy Jones, very little is known as yet of George’s life prior to marriage in 1940 to Elsie Batters. He served as a Private with the Durham Light Infantry and was killed whilst serving on 10 Nov 1942 in Italy. He was buried at Faenza War Cemetery and his headstone carries the inscription “A LITTLE SPOT OF FOREIGN LAND THAT IS FOREVER ENGLAND”.

George Saxon Kenyon, 1919-1944

Stepson of 3rd cousin 5 times removed (Paternal)

George Saxon Kenyon was the eldest of seven children born to George Saxon and Bertha Fielden in Blackpool, Lancashire, England. His mother was named Bertha Kenyon at that time and she was the widow of George Kenyon who had lost his life during World War One. He served as a Private in the 2nd Batt. of the Highland Light Infantry (City of Glasgow Regiment) after first serving with the Loyal Regiment (North Lancashire). He was killed in action on 30 Sep 1944 and is buried at Bari War Cemetery in Italy. The inscription on his headstone reads “ALWAYS IN OUR THOUGHTS”.

Gordon Leavitt, 1908-1943

Husband of 2nd cousin twice removed (Paternal)

Gordon Leavitt was the youngest of eight children born to Almon Leavitt and Sarah Effie Collier, He was born 21 July 1908 in Athol, Prince Edward, Ontario, Canada. He married in 1929 to Bessie Maud Maybee and they had one daughter by the name of Eleanor Fay Leavitt. He worked as a Truck Driver and served as a Private with the Hastings & Prince Edward Regiment R.C.I.C. He was killed in action on 22 July 1943 in Sicily. His remains lie in Agira Canadian War Cemetery in Italy and his headstone is inscribed with the words “TO A NOBLE HEART LOVINGLY AND DEEPLY REMEMBERED. WIFE AND DAUGHTER”

Harold Henry George Dawks, 1916-1941

3rd cousin once removed (Maternal)

The oldest of two boys born to Harold Norman Dawks and Edith Phoebe Ellen Gibbs. He was born on 13 Nov 1916 in Huntingdon, Huntingdonshire, England and was a Brewer’s Drayman by trade and husband to Vera Florence Woodcroft with whom he had one daughter. He served as a Driver with the Royal Army Service Corps and was sadly killed on 27 May 1941, aged 24. He had previously lost two Uncles – George James Thomas Dawks and Francis Ernest Dawks to WW1 conflicts and his only brother Norman James Ernest Dawks also lost his life a year after Harold’s life was taken – a great and terrible sacrifice made by this family. Harold’s name is remembered on the Athens Memorial in Greece.

Herbert Arthur Ambrose, 1910-1942

1st cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Born 17 Jul 1910 in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England to Herbert Ambrose and Sarah May Gillett. He served as a Trooper with the 2nd Dragoon Guards of the Royal Armoured Corps and was killed in action on 4 Feb 1942 in the Middle Eastern Theatre of war at age 31. He was buried in Tripoli War Cemetery in Libya and left behind two younger siblings as well as his parents.

Hubert Chew, 1907-1945

4th cousin twice removed (Maternal)

One of three children and the only son born to Henry Ernest Chew and Elizabeth Wetherald on 29 Sep 1907 in Biggleswade, Bedfordshire, England. He was married to Kathleen Mary Jalland in 1939 and was employed as a Chartered Surveyor. He died in war service on 31 Aug 1945 in the Middle Eastern Theatre of war and was buried in Tripoli War Cemetery in Libya. He was aged 37 at the time and his widow Kathleen never remarried and they had no children.

John Desmond Buckingham, 1925-1945

4th cousin once removed of brother-in-law (M)

John was the only child of Lionel Edward Buckingham and Florence Alice Kempton. He was born on 22 Mar 1925 in Fulham, London, England. He served as a Private in the 3rd Batt. of the Monmouthshire Regiment and died on 2 Apr 1945. He was buried at the Reichswald Forest War Cemetery in Germany and he inscription on his headstone reads “JOHN, THE WELL BELOVED. WHAT BEAUTIFUL MEMORIES HE LEAVES BEHIND. MUM AND DAD” He was just 20 years old when he was killed.

John Henry Waby, 1915-1944

Brother-in-law of 2nd cousin 3 times removed (Maternal)

John Henry Waby was one of fourteen children born to John Henry Waby and Ada Dowman. He was born on 31 Mar 1915 in Bracebridge, Lincolnshire, England, He worked as a Brickmaker and was married to Dorothy Nicholson with whom he had one daughter who was sadly born prematurely and only survived a few hours. He was a Sapper with the Royal Engineers and fought in the Western European Campaign but died on 1 Jul 1944, aged  29. His final resting place is unknown but his name lies on the Bayeux Memorial in France.

John Shields, 1903-1939

1st cousin twice removed of husband (Maternal)

John or “Jock” as he was known to his family and friends was born in Musselburgh, Midlothian, Scotland to Richard Shields and Bethia Wyse Shaw. He was their eldest child and was a Lieutenant with the Royal Naval Reservists. He lost his life on 23 Nov 1939, aged 36, Onboard HMS Rawalpindi when it was sunk by the German battleships Scharnhorst and the Gniesnau. She sank somewhere between Iceland and the Faroe Islands with the loss of 238 souls. A blog post I wrote about this event can be found here and a video made in his honour may be viewed below as well as on the above-mentioned post. His body was never recovered from the sea but he is remembered on the Liverpool Naval Memorial along with all the other men who went down with the ship.

 

John Whiteley, 1904-1944

2nd cousin twice removed (Paternal)

John was an only child born on 1 Apr 1904 in Stalybridge, Cheshire, England to John Whiteley and Martha Hamson. He worked as a Beater Man in the Paper Mills and he was married to Helen (known as Nellie) Rearden with whom he had a daughter named Mary. He served as a Gunner with the Royal Artillery and lost his life on 16 Feb 1944 at Anzio Beachead in Italy aged 39. He is buried at Anzio War Cemetery and his headstone bears the inscription “O, JESUS OPEN WIDE THINE ARMS AND LET HIM REST THEREIN. GOOD NIGHT, DADDY. MARY”.

Joseph Bickerdike, 1914-1944

Husband of 3rd cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Joseph Bickerdike was born in 1913 in Pontefract, Yorkshire, England and was the son of John James and Anne Jane Elliott. His father had served in World War 1 before him. He was married to Gladys Boyce in Leeds in 1937 and they had one daughter together. He served as a Private in the 1st Batt. of the York and Lancaster Regiment and he was killed on 19 Jan 1944 aged 30. He was buried at Minturno War Cemetery in Italy and his headstone is inscribed with the words “HE GAVE HIS LIFE TO KEEP US FREE WITHIN OUR HEARTS HE WILL EVER BE OUR DEAR JOE” His wife gladys married again 3 years after Joseph’s death to a Charles Francis Denley.

Kenneth Victor Bott, 1914-1940

Husband of 1st cousin twice removed of ex-husband

Kenneth was born 26 Sep 1914 in Kingston, Surrey, England to Harold Victor Bott and Beatrice Mary Conibear. He worked as a Purchasing Clerk in London and the home counties and was married to Dorothy Eileen Brown very briefly as he lost his life the same year that he was married. He served as an Aircraftman 2nd Class with the 98th Squadron of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and died whilst on war service on 17 Jun 1940. His name lies on the Runnymede Memorial in Surrey which commemorates more than 20,000 airmen and women who were lost in the Second World War during operations from bases in the United Kingdom and North and Western Europe who have no known grave. His wife Dorothy married again in 1945 to a man named Walter Herbert Huggins.

Michael Edward Thwaites, 1916-1943

Husband of 3rd cousin once removed of sister-in-law (L)

Michael was born 23 Oct 1916 in Bolton, Lancashire, England to Jeffrey Marsland Thwaites and Jessie Lilian Gow. He worked for a Leather Maufacturing Company and was an RAF Pilot. He was married to Mary Morrison in 1940. He was the Squadron Leader for the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserves when he died on 12 Mar 1943, aged 26. He is one of seven airforce men whose remains lie side by side at Minaucourt Communal Cemetery in France. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his devotion to duty and valor whilst flying in active service. The inscription on his headstone simply reads “AT THE GOING DOWN OF THE SUN AND IN THE MORNING WE WILL REMEMBER THEM”.

Norman James Ernest Dawks, 1921-1942

3rd cousin once removed (Maternal)

The younger of two brothers born to Harold Norman Dawks and Edith Phoebe Ellen Gibbs. He was born in Ampthill, Bedfordshire, England in 1921 and died in England on 6 Oct 1942 whilst serving as a Sapper with the Royal Engineers. His brother Harold Henry George Dawks had also lost his life in service the previous year and 2 of Norman’s Uncles lost their lives in WW1 conflicts. Norman was buried in St Andrew’s Churchyard in Ampthill, Bedfordshire and honourable mention is given to Norman’s older brother  on his headstone with the following inscription: “HIS BROTHER HAROLD WAS KILLED IN CRETE 27TH MAY 1941 AGE 25 THEY DIED FOR US” Norman was just 21 at the time of his death.

Paul Harold Elling, 1924-1945

2nd cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Paul was the only child of parents Harold Elling Butcher (who later changed his name to Harold Butcher Elling) and Nellie Stout. He was born on 2 Nov 1924 in Littlehampton, Sussex, England. He served as a wireless operator in the Navy during World War II on HMS Bluebell which was working as a convoy searching for U-boats off the Kola Inlet in Russia at the time it was struck and it was sunk within 30 seconds on 17 Feb 1945. All but one of the ship’s crew were lost. Paul’s body was never recovered and his name lies on the Portsmouth Naval Memorial.

Reginald Frederick Smith, 1921-1944

Husband of 4th cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Born in Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England to Frederick W Smith and Eva Mary Tomlinson and husband to Joyce Mary Carter. Reginald was a Private with the 6th Batt. of the Lincolnshire Regiment. He lost his life on 1 Sep 1944 in Italy and was buried there in the Montecchio War Cemetery. His headstone carries the inscription “SLEEP ON, DEAR REG. THE LORD KNOWS BEST, ON EARTH THERE’S TROUBLE IN HEAVEN THERE’S REST”. He was 23 years of age.

Ronald Butterworth, 1917-1940

1st cousin twice removed of husband (Paternal)

Ronald was the second of three children born to Joseph Butterworth and Mary Lord on 17 Dec 1917 in Rochdale, Lancashire, England. He worked as a Railway Porter prior to his service as a Sapper with the Royal Engineers. He sustained wounds in an air raid at Melbourne, Derbyshire and subsequently died from those wounds on 11 Jul 1940. He was buried alongside his comrades in Melbourne Cemetery and his headstone was inscribed with the words “DEEP IN OUR HEARTS YOUR MEMORY IS KEPT WE LOVED YOU TOO DEARLY TO EVER FORGET” He was 22 years of age when he died.

Sefton Stafford, 1909-1943

3rd cousin twice removed of husband (Paternal)

Born 9 Sep 1909 in Chadderton, Lancashire, England, Sefton Stafford was one of six children for parents Asa Stafford and Rachel Ann Dearden. He was husband to Elizabeth Phillips with whom he lived in  Blackpool, Lancashire, England. Prior to his war service he worked as a Painter and Decorator and then served with the 103 Squadron of the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserves. He lost his life on 1 Apr 1943 at 33 years of age during a flying mission and was buried in Amersfoort (Old Leusden) General Cemetery in Utrecht, Netherlands. His headstone is marked with the inscription “MY DEAR HUSBAND SEFTON. TOO DEARLY LOVED TO BE FORGOTTEN. MOLLY, BLACKPOOL”

Sidney Charles Biggs, 1912-1944

Husband of 3rd cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Sidney was born 2 Mar 1912 in Chesterton, Cambridgeshire, England to parents Harry Biggs and Ethel Blanche Charlton. He worked as a College Servant and was married to Winifred Doris Emmines and they had two children together. He served as a Gunner with the Royal Artillery and lost his life on 12 Aug 1944, aged 32. His name is remembered on the Bayeux War Cemetery Memorial in France.

Walter Derbyshire, 1923-1943

2nd cousin twice removed (Paternal)

Walter was born on 4 February 1923 in Middleton, Lancashire, England to John Derbyshire and Alice Howard and was the youngest of 3 boys born to the couple. He studied at Rochdale Municipal High School. He enlistd with the RAF at age 16 and became a Pilot. In 1943 he is serving with the 500 Squadron of the North West African Air Forces flying a Lockheed Hudson and is sadly killed on 30 Jun 1943 when his plane crashes into a telegraph pole very shortly after take-off killing him almost instantaneously and destroying his plane but his actions are thought to be the reason why his fellow crew members escaped with minor injuries. He was just 20 years of age. He was buried with full honours at Le Petit Lac Cemetery in Algeria and his headstone is inscribed with the words “HE LOVED TRUTH AND FREEDOM MORE THAN HE FEARED DEATH”

Walter John Baggley, 1919-1944

4th cousin twice removed (Maternal)

One of six children born to George Baggley and Miriam Harrison in Lincoln, Lincolnshire, England. He served as Lance Serjeant with the 4th Batt. of the Lincolnshire Regiment and lost his life on 19 Aug 1944 at just age 25 years old. He is buried at La Delivrande War Cemetery in France.

Walter Speakman, 1915-1944

Husband of niece of Great Great Aunt (Paternal)

Walter Speakman was born on 20 January 1915 in Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire, England to Harry Speakman and Jane Mitchell. he was a Window Cleaner by trade and was married to Alice Maher and father to Ian and Sonia Speakman. He served with the 12th (10th Bn. The Green Howards [Yorkshire Regt.]) Bn. and was in the Parachute Regiment, A.A.C.. He died on 12 Jun 1944 and his remains lie in Ranville War Cemetery in France. His headstone is inscribed with the words “IN LOVING MEMORY OF A DEAR HUSBAND AND DADDY. ALWAYS REMEMBERED, SADLY MISSED”

Walter Trever Lee, 1911-1941

4th cousin twice removed (Maternal)

One of seven children born to John Lee and Fanny Trever. Walter was the youngest of the seven born on 17 Aug 1911 in Hull, Yorkshire, England. He was the Third Engineer Officer with the Merchant Navy serving on the merchant vessel Edwy R Brown at the time of his death which was on 18 Feb 1941 somewhere off the coast of Iceland. The ship he was on was struck several times by U-boats and left to sink in a flaming condition. The entire crew was lost and presumed drowned. Aged 29 at death, he is named on Panel 37 of the Tower Hill Memorial in London. He was awarded a medal for his service. His brother William Trever Lee also lost his life the previous year and and also named on Tower Hill Memorial.

William Bettsworth, 1917-1940

Nephew of 2nd Great Aunt (Paternal)

Born in Ashton Under Lyne, Lancashire, England to parents to John Thomas Bettsworth and Elizabeth Ann Paul, William served as Lance Corporal for the Duke of Wellington’s (West Riding) Regiment where he lost his life on 11 Jun 1940 aged 22 years old. His remains were re-buried at Sainte Marie Cemetery in France.

William Trever Lee, 1908-1940

4th cousin twice removed (Maternal)

Born 2 Aug 1908 in Hull, Yorkshire, England to John Lee and Fanny Trever and bother to Walter Trever Lee who is listed above. William worked as an Engineer in the Merchant Navy and was assigned to “SS Leo” at the time of his death on the 25 Jul 1940. His ship lay off the coast of Folkestone, Dover as part of a convoy when it was attacked by air raid bombers which ultimately sank the ship and William was one of six men who were killed during that attack. He was aged 31 at the time. His name like his brother Walter lies on Tower Hill Memorial in London.

 

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