WWII MEMORIES

Information for Veterans and their families


Help V/W

Select the letter of the alphabet from the list below to view requests for help concerning that surname, location or camp.


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Numerics

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Virley, Colin
Vickers, Leslie Ambrose
Verret, Leona
Vittell PoW Camp, France
Venus, Ron
Varney, Frank

Vincenty
, Eriel Ramirez


Waldron, Jack
Walker, Jonathan (Jack)
Walsh, Robert James
Walton, Reginald Terence
Ward, James
Ward, Percy G.
Wardle, N. R.
Warren, Joseph
Warwick, Jack William
Watson, Thomas
Wayne, Nathan
Weber, George William
Webster, John
Wernicke, Bruno
Werrell, John F.
West, Al
Weston, Richard William
Westwood, Sydney Francis
Wheatley, William Henry
Whennell, George Henry
Wholeben, Bernard
Whitmarsh, Leonard Watkin
Wicketts, Jim
Wieldraaijer, Dr Jan
Wild, Bernard Fredrick
Wilding, Alfred Charles
Wilkinson, Joseph
Will, Neal E.
Williams, Charles (Charlie)
Williams, Emrys
Williams, Graham John
Wilson, Charles
Wilson, Christopher
Wilson, Tom
Win, Norman H.
Wisdom, Clifford H.
Wise, Kenneth
Wolgamott, George
Wood, Peter Hamilton
Woods, Robert (Bob)
Woolcock, James (Jimmy)
Wright, James
Wright, L. H.
Wright, Stanley George (Jimmy)
Wright, Henry Thomas


Colin Virley

Can you help with further information on Colin?  He was a Gunner in the East Surrey Regiment and was captured at Dunkirk and transported to Stalag XXA where he spent the whole of the war. He died in 1985 of a heart attack but always had stomach problems, presumably to do with the lack of adequate food in the camp. Up until his death he was involved in amateur dramatics which he said he got interested in whilst in the PoW camp. His wife, who is still alive, said he marched to Torun.

If you can help, please contact his son Keith

I heard from Ann in March 2006.

She has tried to get in touch with Keith regarding his father, Colin who was in Stalag XXA. Her father was also in that camp and remembers Colin.

Keith, please could you contact me or Ann with a new email address?

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John F. Werrell

Denis is looking for information on a Great-Grandfather, John F. Werrell?

He was a Private in the 4th Battalion, Royal Berkshire Regiment.

Denis recently got a copy of his PoW card and he was listed as being at both Stalag XXA and Stalag XXB. It seems he might have been there from 1st November 1940 to 1943.

The only other Information Denis knows is that he died in January 1946 of a disease he caught in camp.

Please contact Denis directly if you have any information.

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George Wolgamott

Sandy's brother-in-law, George Wolgamott from Michigan, USA, was a prisoner at Stalag 2A, Neubrandenburg.

His family has no records except the ones she found in the US National Archives and Records. They know he was with the Army Corps of Engineers and that he was captured at the Battle of the Bulge. The date of the report was December 1944.

George was 21 years old when he went into the service. There is a picture of him in his uniform and it has a large 2 on the sleeve.

George's family was notified that he died in the prison camp, however one person told them that George was alive when he saw him last.

Here is a picture of George. Click to enlarge it:

If anyone has any information on George or the prison camp please contact Sandy

31st May 2010

Tracy sent the following information:

"Wolgamott, George E.: Serial no. 36184606; enlisted 1942; born 1921; POW Stalag IIA; Returned to Allies; 12/31/21-3/31/45; buried Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia; PFC Engr Corps, 44th Engr Combat; dates suggest he returned alive but died later of maltreatment incurred while pow."

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Reginald Terence Walton

J. Arnold is searching for information on Reginald Terence Walton who was born on 14th September 1914.

He was a Regimental Sergeant Major in the Pioneer Corp and was awarded the Burma Star.

He was a PoW in Japan and,lived in Punjab for 10 years, marrying Edna Warburton on 5th March 1953.

If you can help, please contact J.Arnold

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Clifford H. Wisdom

Mr Wisdom is looking for information relating to his father, Clifford H. Wisdom, PVT, US Army. He was a PoW in Stalag IIA.

If you can help, please contact Mr Wisdom

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Jack Waldron

Jack's nephew is trying to track down information on his uncle, Jack Waldron.

Jack was in the Queen Victoria Rifles (QVR) and was captured at Calais in 1940. He may have won the DCM.

If anyone knows which PoW camp he was in or remembers him, please contact Jack's Nephew

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Neal E. Will

Lady/gentleman is looking for any information about their grandfather, Neal E. Will who was a paratrooper/glider during WWII and was a PoW in Stalag XIIA. Sadly he passed away in 1990 before much could be found out about his time in the War.

If anyone has any information on Neal, please email

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Dr Jan Wieldraaijer

Diana is looking for information about her grandfather, Dr Jan Wieldraaijer from Smilde, The Netherlands, who as a civillian was taken in 1942 by the Germans and forced to work in both Stendal and Tangerhutte, Germany working camps until 1946. He worked on the railways.

Diana would like information about those camps, the conditions, etc and would also like to hear from people who were there with him as well during that period. She would also like any records of him working there and what he had to do exactly.

If anyone has any information on Jan or the camps, please contact Diana

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Norman H. Win

Sarah is looking for information on her grandfather, Private 36305 Norman H Win - PoW number 22753.

He was in the New Zealand Medic Core and was a PoW in Stalag VIIIB for several years then went missing for about a year in 1941 and was known to be in Stalag IXC. On 25th June 1942 he was transfered to Oflag IXA.

Sarah and her family would love any infomation on his time as a PoW. He came home to his family a very sick man.

If anyone has any information on Norman, remembers him or was in the camps, please contact Sarah

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Sydney Francis Westwood

Kevin is looking for any information about his grandfather, Sydney Francis Westwood, who was a driver with the BEF. He was captured on the 12th June 1940 and was held in Stalag XXB for the next 5 years. He died in 1947 of TB and any information or stories anyone might have would be greatly appreciated by Kevin and his family.

If anyone has any information Sydney or was in Stalax XXB with him, please contact Kevin.

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Leslie Ambrose Vickers

Susan's father, Leslie Ambrose Vickers, was seconded to the 51st Highland Division towards the end of WWII. He has mislaid his coveted regimental beret and Susan would love to be able to give him a replacement for his 90th, and to give him a boost after a spell of nill health.

If anyone can help with information on how a replacement beret could be obtained, please contact Susan.

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William Henry Wheatley

Barbara would like to find out about a soldier who was in the West Yorkshire branch of the RASC for a friend of hers.

His name was William Henry Wheatley Number 324594 and he joined up on 6th June 1916 and was discharged in 1919.

Barbara's friend has in her possession some memorabilia that may interest someone - it is to do with the Leeds Pals and an invite by the Grand Duchess George for William to go to a dinner in Harrogate on the 24th December 1918. Also her friend has a few photos taken when William was in the Regiment and there is also an embroidered card she thought may be of interest too.

If you have any information or would be interested in the memorabilia, please contact Barbara.

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James Ward

Keith's grandfather, James (Jimmy) Ward was in the RASC attached to the 51st when he was captured at St Valery. All Keit knows is that occasionally he was assigned to drive Major General Victor Fortune.

He was injured with shrapnel to his foot and had to have his boot cut off prior to the march to Germany and Poland

If you have any information on James, please contact Keith

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N. R. Wardle

Christine is looking for information from anyone who may remember Driver T/61609 N.R.Wardle R.A.S.C. Testimonial from 42 Company, Aldershot, 6.4.39.

He was her great grandfather. He was a PoW in 1941 P.W 27, Stalag XXA 319 and 1943 P.W 330 M, Stummlager XXA 94 according to the post cards Christine has in her possession. As far as she knew he was still alive in 1945 but may have died on the march out of Poland.

Christine is looking for further information, ie. where his body might be buried or if he was ever even found.

Christine was told he used to sing and play the piano and one of his favourite songs was "When the Poppies Bloom Again". Has anyone got the music for this song?

If you have any information on Driver Wardle, please contact Christine

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Percy G. Ward

Fred's uncle, Percy G. Ward, 9996 was a PoW from 1940-1945.

He was taken prisoner at Dunkirk and was in various camps. Fred has just been given some photos that where taken in one of the camps, Heyedreck O/S 5 3. Kgf. B.A.B. 20 and is trying to find out a bit more about the camp. Here they are:-

Do you recognise anyone in these photographs or were you at the camp? f you have any information on Percy or Heyedreck, please contact Fred

UPDATE: FEBRUARY 2016: The middle photograph also shows George John Causton (standing, 2nd from left, back row). See Help C for more details.

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Alfred Charles Wilding

Rachel is looking for a photograph of her great uncle, Alfred Charles Wilding, during his passing out parade. She has provided the following details:

No 1
Surname, Forename WILDING, Alfred Charles
Rank Lance Corporal
Service Number 5380872
Date of Death 4th May 1944
Age 31
Regiment/Service Royal Norfolk Regiment
Nationality United Kingdom
Grave/Memorial Ref. 2.C.19
Cemetery/Memorial Name Kohima War Cemetery

Alfred was with the Royal Norfolk Regiment 2nd Battalion during World War 2. Rachel has no idea when the photograph was taken but would be grateful of any clues or advice on how sheI could get hold of one, if that's even possible.

If you have any information on Alfred or know how to obtain (or have a copy of) the passing out photograph, please contact Rachel

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Joseph Warren

Looking for information on Joseph Warren, Lance Corporal, imprisoned in M-Stammlager 306 XVIIID, Marburg, Slovenia.

If you have any information on Driver Wardle, please email

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George Henry Whennell

Sally's father, George Henry Whennell, was at Stammlager XXB from 1940 to 1945.

She has a photo with four other names on the back:

L. Wigbull (R.Es)
D. Woods (Cheshires)
A. Womaela (R. Ms Searchlights)
J. Watt (Gordon Highlanders)

Sally would like to find out some more about her father's time there if any of the other gentlemen's family members have any details. She notes it is strange how their names all began with "W" - must have been the way the work details were set out.

If you have any information on any of these people, please contact me so I can pass it on to Sally.

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Jack William Warwick

Lorraine has just discovered that her grandfather, Jack William Warwick was a PoW in Stalag XXB, No. 19891.

If you have any information on Jack, please email Lorraine

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Peter Hamilton Wood

Tricia is seeking further information on her husband, Peter Hamilton Wood (Scottish).

PoW Service No 25471. He was in BAB 20 and was also was made to electrical work while a PoW near end of the war.

He did the forced march with other PoWs. Sadly died 21st April 2007.

If you have any information on Peter, please contact Tricia

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Robert (Bob) Woods

Chris has read the article on Danny Dorlin and wondered if he or anyone else may know of his father, Robert (Bob) Woods, Royal Norfolks, captured at St Valery, PoW Stalag XXA 1940 to 1943, Stalag XXB 1943 to 1945 on death march from this camp. Chris am keen to track route taken and research further his history

If you have any information on Bob or you were on the march from Stalag XXB, please contact Chris

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James (Jimmy) Woolcock

Steve has written a book on his father, Jimmy, called "My Father - An Ordinary Hero" which is available to buy. Please see the Links page for details or contact Steve directly.

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Stanley George (Jimmy) Wright

Colin wrote the following to this site for the attention of Danny Dorlin and Jack Gee:

Jack and Danny,
Having just read your article called My Nazi death march via WWII memories with great interest I felt that I must contact you. My late Father Stanley George Wright (Jimmy) also served with the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Norfolk Regiment during the 2nd World War. He was posted very early in France and captured and held in both Stalag XXA and Stalag XXB as a POW for 5 years and 25 days. As he died in 1974 and he didn’t talk of his experiences very much I know very little Information of his time spent there. Although reading Danny’s story mirrors many things that also happened to him, I remember how he said that the winters were very cold and of marching over frozen rivers, being hungry all the time, seeing Stuka dive bombers and how terrifying they were as they screamed out of the sky dropping their bombs. During his captivity his main occupation was Farm work, he said that generally his treatment by the Regular German soldiers was OK, not like the poor unfortunate people i! n the Concentration camps that were not so far away. After the war he was not bitter toward German people, he had quite a good understanding of the German language and he taught me how to count in German when I was quite young. He said that he had learned a lot of lessons in life while he was there, to appreciate what he had got and not to waste it. I only wish I had spent more time with him while he was alive to find out more about his experiences in the War. I think people like Danny and my Dad are Heroes and we should never forget what they did for us all those years ago. If you have any information on the 2nd Battalion of The Royal Norfolk Regiment or anything you think may be of interest on this story please forward it to me as my family and I are greatly interested. I have a couple of pictures you may find of interest, featuring my father before he went to France and when he returned home and married my mother. I am unaware of a means to forwarding these pictures to ! you other than via email. Please get in touch if you would like to view them. I look forward to hearing from you in the future.

Of course I got in touch and here are the two photos.

Raw recruit, barely 20 years old
6 months after the War marrying his wife

If you have any other information that can help, please email Colin.

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Charles Wilson

Laura is looking for information on her grandfather, Charles Wilson, who served as a driver with the 13th Field Survey Company in the Royal Engineers.

Laura's family never knew much about him as he died when her mother was a baby in 1954.

Laura got hold of his Army Record a few days ago which has been a wonderful source of information but to find someone who personally knew him would be amazing.

If you can help, please email Laura

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Bernard Fredrick Wild

Ann has a wonderful picture of her father, Bernard Fredrick Wild, from WWII.

He was with the Canadian Army, Royal Canadian Signal Corps. He originally enlisted with the Elgin Regiment and Ann believes spent some time with the Queens Own Rifles.

He landed on Normandy and did signalling from the beach.

The picture has 19 of his comrades with their smiling faces. Ann's father had written on back "taken in Kranenberg, Germany, 1945, upon hearing that we would be going home in 4 months."

Ann is happy for me to post this picture the site where she may be able to locate some of the living veterans in this picture, or perhaps their surviving family member(s). Bernard is in the front row, 2nd from right with the scarf on.

Unfortunately, Bernard has passed away but Ann would like to honour his memory by sharing this wonderful picture with others.

If you knew of Bernard, please email Ann

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Al West

Rhonda would like to find anyone who might have known an Al West (photographed on the right) or Leona Verret who were both assigned to the 124th Evacuation Hospital in the Army during WWII.

Leona was a nurse and Rhonda thinks Al may have been a medic. They were sent overseas and participated in the Battle of the Bulge.

Rhonda would also like to find information on the 124th Evacuation Hospital.

If you can help, please email Rhonda

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Vittel, France

Neomi is looking for information on Vittal Camp in France.

In July 1944, some 50 Polish/Jewish were arrested "exchanged" for Germans citizens.

Neomi is researching their time at Vittal.

If you can help, please email Neomi

James Fox sent me an update 2nd July 2009:

"In my email of 14th October 2007. the book on Mary BERG is now published as THE DIARY OF MARY BERG - Growing up in the Warsaw Ghetto” published by ONE WORLD, in Oxford/England and ISBN 13.978-1-85158-472-4. Which also relates to her detention at the Vittel camp in France."

October 2007

James Fox contacted me to say:

"Yesterday I met for the first time a man who was born in June 1944 in the Vittel detention camp in France, his parents and grandparents who were Jewish from Poland with a S.American visa were among the many jews from Europe and the Polish ghetto that had Latin American visas which were not all authenticated in the spring of 1944 when the Germans were doing exchange programmes. The grandparents and parents of the boy were among those alloted to be sent to Auschwitz, the mother being in the stages of giving birth could not travel, and was in the camp hospital.Consequently their lives were saved and no other convoys left after that for Auschwitz.Vittel camp was a compound of hotels and parc behind barbed wire around the pre war spa facilities and was liberated on 14th September 1944. The child’s father and grandparents were gassed in Auschwitz.The Vittel camp doctors were mostly French POW’s with only one British POW officer Dr. Monteith (Capt.British Army), the child is in a photo the day after his birth in the arms of the Doctor and together besides a British camp nurse and a British nun (of which there were 500 nun detainees in Vittel camp).I have not managed to trace any further information on Dr.Monteith who was a Scot’sman. British men who were married and at Tost&Kreuzburg camp in Upper Silessia, and British women at Liebenau camp in Southern Germany, were re-united as couples at the Vittel camp where they were housed in pre war hotels.The men and sons from St.Denis camp near Paris were also reunited with their wives at Vittel.I have collaborated with an American professor working on American/jewish detainees in the Vittel camp, and a new version of a book called MARY BERG,Years of Detention- Warsaw Ghetto/Pawiak prison and Vittel (re edited by Prof.Susan Pentling ) has been produced this year by WIDE WORLD Publishers in Oxford/England.

Vittel camp was a barbed wire compound around the former Spa facilities with hotels and sports facilities in the town of Vittel which was created in May 1941 for families , sometime later when jewish detainees with American and Latin American passports/visas arrived in 1943 they were installed in hotels outside the periometer of the camp grounds, and also behind barbed wire and they were connected by wooden footbridges to the camp. These people some 342 of them came from Poland, and Eastern Europe, in the case of Mary Berg her mother was American born but living in Poland. In April 1944 the German authorities not having received authentification of the visas of the jewish contingent, sent them to Auschwitz where they were immediately executed. The jews who were British citzens from Palestine, were later exchanged against Germans and put on a convoy via Istanbul and onwards to Haifa.

Vittel was liberated on 14 September 1944, several train convoys of detainees were sent prior to that via Lisbon and exchanged for Germans and were on the Swedish ‘mercy ships’ the Drottningholm and the Kronsberg.

I remain interested in civilian detainees from the United Kingdom and Commonwealth, and also specifically of the men and families of persons who had worked prior to 1940 for the Imperial War Graves Commission cemeteries of WWI and were arrested in Belgium and N.France and taken to Tost/Kreuzburg, and St.Denis and Besancon/Vittel camps.

Thank you for your assistance. James A Fox/Paris.France."

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Ron Venus

Helena has a bundle of letters written to her mother from a PoW in Stalag XXA.

She has tried to trace the writer through the PoW Association without success as she would like the letters to be returned to the PoW or his family or failing that she is open to suggestions.

The PoW was L/Cpl Ron Venus who was in Camp No. 6825 Stalag XXA. He came from the Dover area and was a clerk in the electricity office in Folkstone in civilian life. He called Helena's mother "Nicky"and she lived in Lincolnshire, she was put in touch with him through the British Prisoners of War Books and Games Fund.

Ron was 21 years old at the time he was taken prisoner.

The letters date from February 1941 until he returned home in May 1945. Helena thinks he may have emigrated to New Zealand as she has found some references to him on the prisonersofwar.org site. However they have been unable to trace him.

If you can help, please email Helena

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Frank Varney

Andrew is looking for information on his father, Frank Varney, of 11th Commando 10 Troop, who took part in the raid to capture Rommel in November 1941. He then spent a period of time in a PoW camp PM3450 at Gravina.

If you can help, please email Andrew.

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Thomas Watson

Looking for information on Sgt. Thomas Watson, age 28, killed in action on 21th September 1944 at Driel Ferry whilst commanding B Company 1st Bat. the Border Regiment.

Thomas came from Blyth.

If you can help with information or photographs, please contact Mrs Thomson

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Leonard Watkin Whitmarsh

Received the following email:

"I am trying to find out any information about my Dad's time in Stalag XXA. I know that he was in Hut no 13 from 1940-45 his regiment was Royal Signals."

If you can help with information or photographs, please email

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Richard William Weston

Received the following email from Elizabeth:

"I would love to know something about my grand father who served in the Middlesex Regiment, Second Battalion and whose rank was a Sergeant and his Army Number was 6848964. What I do know is that he was discharged on the 3th February 1946.

His name was Richard William Weston.

I´ve got a letter from a Major HB Neue (not very clear),to my grand father, thanking him for the work he had done."

Richard Weston (ringed)
Richard Weston

If you can help with information or photographs, please contact Elizabeth

21 October 2015: Update. Put this photo on Twitter and @sommecourt kindly replied to say " those men including him all appear to be King's Royal Rifle Corps, not Middlesex. Maybe he later transferred?"

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Frederick Woodcock

Received the following email:

"I am trying to find any information on my uncle Frederick (Fred) Woodcock who was a member of the Lancashire Fusiliers his Army Number was 3450661. He was prisoner we believe at Stalag VIII and his PoW number was 11043 we believe his was in the camp during 1942."

If you can help with information or photographs, please email Lesley

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Henry Thomas Wright

Received the following email:

"I am trying to find more information about a relative of mine: Henry Thomas Wright, born 1913, a military policeman at Bordon Camp, Hampshire in 1935."

If you can help with information or photographs, please contact Lawrence

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Bruno Wernicke

Gabby says:

"I am looking for any information on an allied POW camp in Savoi France that held Germans as POWs. My grandfather, Bruno Wernicke (born 1901) was held here and released in 1946 or 1947.

Also my father was a POW held by Americans, but I don't know where. His name was Joachim Tismer. He was a youth at this time.

Don't know of you have information on Germans, but if you do, I am appreciative of any help you can provide."

If you have any information please contact Gabby

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Joseph Wilkinson

Andy says:

"My father was held prisoner in Stalag IVC, Wistritz. I think I've spotted him in one of your newspapers. It is the October edition and the picture is of an open air band. I am pretty sure my dad is the second from the right at the back. Have you any more info on this photo? (editor: sadly not)

My dads name was Joseph Wilkinson, Army No: 4127654.

I've also got a photo taken of the Braumhole Benconi Factory, Brux which Ibelieve is where most PoWs worked, if any interest, just after it was bombed 12th May 1944.

If you have any information please contact Andy

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Tom Wilson

Bryen says:

"Hi wonder if you can help I have been sent a photo of my grandad during the War on the back there is a German mark as below:

M - Stammlager
XXB
Gepruft 14

His name Tom Wilson (TOT) and I think his number is 872976

I can't see a date or any other information. Can you point me in the right direction?"

Here is the picture (click to enlarge). Tom is seated bottom right. Bryen said "I know he was medically experimented on whilst in the hands of the Germans, I also know he was marched to Poland then back to France before being marched back to the camp. His boots where taken at some point as you can see from the photo he is wearing German high boots."

Bryen also has found the following information:

Tom was with the Royal Artillery, PoW No. 5536, held at Stalag XXB, Malbork, Poland. He was manning a field gun, he was called away, another soldier took up his post. Moments later a direct hit to his post from the Germans rendered most of his colleagues dead. He never spoke of that event often although Bryen knows several other stories.

If you have any information please contact Bryen

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Kenneth Wise

"My Grandfather is trying to chase his foster brother, Kenneth Wise, who was a Barnado boy shipped out to Canada in 1940, aged approx 15 or 16 years old. There he joined the Victoria Rifles, and was killed in action in Italy, aged 19 years old. He was buried with his comrades. This would have been approximately 1943.

I can find no records of his service or death in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Can anyone suggest places to search for his details? My Grandfather has always wondered where he was laid to rest, and believes he was probably the only person in the world to shed a tear for Ken.

Any advice or information gratefully received. Thank you."

If you have any information please contact Samantha

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Jonathan (Jack) Walker

"I'm currently trying to find out any information on my Great Grandad Jonathan Walker (Christened Jack Walker.) He served with the Manchester Regiment as a corporal and was captured in Dunkirk. He was a POW for 5 years in Stalag XXB and worked on a farm, although I don't know of any details of the farm.

I've had a long conversation with my grandma about him and she said he never spoke of his experiences.

I'm currently in Germany and since I've been here, finding out my family's influence on the War has been my main interest. I'm looking for some more information on how he was captured, some personal stories of him and especially some possible pictures of him. We don't know how to get hold of his service records, or any sort of documentation that may be of relevance."

If you have any information please contact Leigh

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Eriel Vincenty

"Eriel Ramirez Vincenty, another WWII Navy Veteran."

If you have any information please contact me.

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Bernard Wholeben

"My father is 1st Lt.Bernard Wholeben. 703rd Bomb Squadron, 446th Bomb Group, 8th Air Force. He was the navigator of a B17, shot down May 28, 1944 and was in Stalag III (3). He was liberated April 1945 after marching into Poland. Any info would be appreciated."

Click images to enlarge.

If you have any information please email

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Robert James Walsh

"I am trying to trace Robert James Walsh (my grandfather) who was a lance corporal no. F 78837 or could be F 18831.
He was in the Royal Canadian Corp of Signals (Railway Engineer)."

If you have any information please contact Tara

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Nathan Wayne

"My father-in-law, Nathan Wayne, was in the 747 Tank Battalion. I am trying to find any information on this Battalion and possibly any pictures. On November 11, 2011, he will be receiving the French Legion of Honor Medal."

If you have any information please contact Corinne

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Charles (Charlie) Williams

John emailed to say:

"My uncle was Charlie Williams and he was at Stalag XXA (M-Stammlager XXA Gepruft 19) in 1942.
His number appears to be 10787
The fact that he has put a 6 in brackets after XXA, does that imply there were a number of camps as part of Stalag XXA and all in the same area."

Click photo to enlarge:

Charlie Williams is 3rd from the left on the back row. Photo taken at Stalag XXA and is date stamped April 1942

If you have any information please contact John

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Christopher Wilson

Keith has compiled a lot of information about BAB21 Blechammer as his father-in-law, Gunner, Christopher Wilson. 1509645 2nd Searchlight Regiment, Royal Artillery was held captive there. His PoW No 3366 and he was captured May 1940 and held in this camp (from Posen) until the great march started 21 January 1945. Keith has the route taken which Christopher wrote on the back of two Red Cross parcel content sheets. He also has approx 80 group photos all taken at BAB21. Christopher went to France with the BEF on the 1st January 1940. He was granted 10 days leave back to England on the 4th of May 1940, he returned to France and a few days later was captured at Cap gris Nez on the 23rd May.

The photograph was taken at XX1D Posen, Christopher obtained two copies of this photo, one he sent back home, the other he kept with him throughout his captivity. All the men would have had a copy to send back home.

A photograph appears in the book, "Dunkirk The Men We Left Behind" by Sean Longden and I immediately recognised the background, the photo shows a group of men in front of a building at XX1D, it is taken at the exact location of Christopher's photo, the same bench, the same wooden hut, and the same tree and shrubs in the background. After spending time at Posen, he was moved to Blechammer, Bau und Arbeits Battalion 21."

There are a large amount of photos that Keith sent in from B.A.B.21 here so please see if you recognise anyone

There is also a record of four of the PoWs Forced March to freedom from BAB21 here.

Click to enlarge the images below

Capture card   The Red X Attestation details are all correct except for one thing, on the last section regarding the camps where he was held.
It states. Admitted to Stalag 344 on 20.11.44, coming from B.A.B.21 [according to a list dated 20.11.1944].

This order was never carried out, all the men remained at BAB21 until the march, which started at BAB21 Blechammer on the 21st Jan.
This error is on all RedX attestations for the men at BAB21.
I have tried to investigate this error with no success, i can only assume that the Russian advance quickened to a point where it overtook German forward planning.

XX1D Posen - Christopher is front row, on the left Paybook showing Christopher's leave just before his capture.
Keith says "I have copies of his units, daily war diaries, from the departure from england, by ship, all the route into france taken, the placement of the units, and the entries listing pops 5 battery, which goes entirely missing on the 23rd may. It then records the withdrawal back to Dunkirk."
Death march record kept by Christopher
   
Second page of death march record kept by Christopher    

If you have any information please contact Keith

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John Webster

Stan is looking for information as follows:

"2135983 Sapper John Webster, Royal Engineers. Died 1st January 1945, aged 34. Buried at Druten, Netherlands.

Background : 91 Field Company, Royal Engineers was a company that was started in the Army or Corps level. At D-Day, John Webster was among 101 Beach Sub-Area, 5 & 6 Beach Groups. After the successful landings, these units were disbanded and the companies assigned elsewhere as needed. On January 1, 1945 the company six men, five of which are scattered, buried or lost. One is still missing.

They were:
Sapper S.C. Barham, buried in Haaften
Driver E. G. Felmingham, buried in Ophemert
Sapper D. Gilchrist, m.i.a.
Sapper J. C. Loughlin, buried in Bergen op Zoom (field tomb in Wamel)
Sapper N. Parker, buried in Nijmegen Jonkerbosch (field grave in Nijmegen)
Sapper J. Webster, buried in Druten

Given the places where the soldiers are buried or field graves located, I suspect that we are dealing with an accident or a hit."

click to enlarge the image

If you can help with any information please contact Stan

JANUARY 2016 UPDATE:

I heard from John Webster's son, John, with the following update:

"Information relating to my father, John Webster.

Someone called Stan was asking for information about my father but has not so far responded to the email I sent him. Here are some of the facts as I now know them.

My father is buried at Druten, near Nijmegen, in The Netherlands. He was killed, along with five others, on 1st January 1945. The cause of the death was confused because my mother was told by one of his officers at the time that they were on a boat deploying booms when they came under attack from German aircraft. The river was high, it was a very bad winter, and the bodies were only recovered some weeks later when the ice thawed. This explains why the soldiers are buried in different places because it depended on where they were washed up. My father was buried in the churchyard at Druten and is the only soldier buried there.

Recently, I contacted the National Archives in London and managed to get copies of the Unit War Diaries for the 91st Field Company Royal Engineers and these give a different account as to the cause of death compared to what my mother was told. Perhaps they liked to make the story more heroic for the wives. The diaries give this account ""six men of 3Pl were drowned while casting anchors from a barge. The barge overturned whilst being manoeuvred by a tug" The diaries also record that the weather was icy with some snow and there had been recent floods.

I attended the 70th Commemoration Service on 4th May 2015 at the invitation of the Druten Commemoration Committee. They knew of my existence as a result of a couple of visits I made over the past twenty years when I became friends with a Druten man who has kept me updated with events. The 2015 service was a very moving event and included a parade to my father's grave and the laying of wreaths. It was attended by, I would estimate, over 600 people of all ages and my wife and I were very well received and looked after during the visit.

I have gathered much material over the years so if Stan or anyone else reads this and is interested please get in touch by my email address - john.webster.balerno@btinternet.com".

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George William Weber

George emailed to say:

"My grandfather, George William Weber, also served on HMS BUTTERMERE untill some time in 1943(?). Unfortunately he also passed away from lung cancer in January 2007 aged 90."

If you have any information please contact George

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James Wright

George emailed to say:

"Looking for information on JAMES WRIGHT who was in Stalag IIID. Not sure of any dates, but he was captured in Crete."

If you have any information please contact Marie

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L. H. Wright

Michael emailed to say:

"My father was a prisoner of war, taken at Tobruk in 1942, and spent I think about a year at a camp in Italy. I have a photograph my mother sent to him with the following information on the back:
Gunner L. H. Wright, P.G. 53 (Sector III) P.M. 3300, Italia.
I would be interested in locating the site, so any suggestions would be very helpful.

Dad died in 1986 and said very little about being a prisoner, particularly in Italy. I do know he worked in a sugar refining factory and was moved to Germany as the Allies got a foothold into Italy, though not sure when. Apparently there was a spectacular thunder storm as they went over the Alps, but that's about all."

If you have any information please contact Michael

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Emrys Williams

James emailed to say:

"I am trying to find any info about my maternal grandfather EMRYS WILLIAMS he was in Stalag XXA. He was with the 3rd Battalion, Welsh Guards and was captured at either Boulogne or Dunkirk. He originated from a Welsh village called Garth near to Llangollen, Denbighshire. We don''t know a lot about his time in the camp as he never really spoke of it but we think he made a few escape attempts but not to sure. Any info will be of great interest to us as a family."

If you have any information please contact James

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Graham John Williams

Emma emailed to say:

"Graham John WILLIAMS, dob: 30/09/1925 (died 1985). I'm wondering if there's anyone alive that remembers Graham, or knows anything about him at all. It's proving very difficult to find anything about his wartime years. He was from Llanelli (then spelt 'Llanelly') and was in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers in the Second World War. He was captured and became a PoW at one of the Stalag camps. He was involved in the death march (also known as the thousand mile march) across Germany. However, he along with another 2 or 3 prisoners escaped whilst on a break - they rolled into a ditch and hid. They escaped to Ulm where they were rescued by American troops, however as he had a Welsh language bible on him they thought he was German initially! Eventually they did believe him and they were rescued, and he returned home. He refused to speak about his PoW time to family, but only said the information I've provided. He was a relatively short (perhaps about 5ft 7 at best) but stocky - muscular/solid man. He had wavy hair, slightly full lips with a wide smile, and wore round metal rimmed glasses."

Click to enlarge

If you have any information please contact Emma

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