West Wales War Memorial Project
West Wales War Memorial Project

Burry Port WW2 War Memorial

Burry Port is a large town situated overlooking Carmarthen Bay, on the Burry Estuary. The men of the town who lost their lives in both world wars are commemorated on a war memorial which also contains the names of the fallen of the neighbouring town of Pembrey. For clarity, I have split the memorial up, to separate the two towns, so Pembrey has its own separate page. This web-page commemorates the men of Burry Port who fell during World War Two.

World War Two, 1939-1945

 

Arthur Allen, Lance Corporal, 3971158, Seaforth Highlanders. Arthur was from Burry Port, and served with the 1st Battalion, Seaforth Highlanders. The battalion served in India, attached to the 23rd Indian Division. In April 1944 the battalion was in Burma, as part of the besieged garrison at Imphal, and on 15 April took part in an attack on a Japanese patrol. Arthur was killed during the subsequent fighting. He was 32 years old, and is buried at Imphal War Cemetery, Burma.

George Leslie Arthur, Private, 14796673, Welch Regiment. George was the son of George and Doris Arthur, of Burry Port, and served with the 4th Battalion, Welch Regiment, which was the local territorial unit, attached to the 53rd (Welsh) Division. The Division landed on the Normandy beachhead in June 1944, and from then on took part in the break out from Normandy, and the subsequent drive through France and Belgium into Holland. On 28 March 1945, the Division was involved in fierce fighting around the Dutch town of Bocholt. George was killed in action that day, aged just 19, and is commemorated on the Groesbeek Memorial, Netherlands.

Harry Welby Bone, Trooper, 14401804, Royal Armoured Corps. Harry was the son of Henry George Welby Bone and Hilda Carrie Bone, of Longsight, Manchester. He served with the 13th/18th Royal Hussars, which were part of the Royal Armoured Corps, and served as the reconnaissance regiment of the 1st Infantry Division in the Battle of France, and with 27th Armoured Brigade (later transferred to 8th Armoured Brigade) in the Battle of Normandy, where it was equipped with Sherman DD tanks. The Hussars took part in the break out from the Normandy beach-head, and fought in the drive through France towards Belgium and Holland. Harry was killed on 1 September 1944, during an engagement at the River Authie, near Doullens in northern France. He was 19 years old, and is commemorated on the Groesbeek Memorial, Netherlands.

Raymond Bowen, Able Seaman, D/JX 188772, Royal Navy. Raymond was born at Burry Port on 10 February 1918 and served aboard HMS Thanet, which was an S-Class destroyer, which had been commissioned after WW1. At the outbreak of WW2 she was on the China Station, and served in the Pacific, carrying out minelaying around Hong Kong. On the morning of 26 January 1942, Thanet along with HMAS Vampire was ordered to go to Endau on the east coast of Malaya where it had been reported that Japanese forces were landing. What was not reported was that there was a large fleet of Japanese warships assisting the landing. Thanet and Vampire went in, but within minutes Thanet had been hit by torpedoes and gun fire and she sank. A number of men escaped and made their way overland to Singapore, but were apparently executed that day by the Japanese. It is not known if Raymond was with those men who escaped, but he is recorded as having died on 26 January 1942, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

Ronald David Charles Cant, Corporal, 7943166, Royal Armoured Corps. Ronald was from Burry Port, and served with the 5th Royal Tank Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps. As part of 1st Armoured Division, 5th RTR went to France in 1940 and subsequently to North Africa after evacuation from Dunkirk. It served right through that campaign and then went to Italy, in 22nd Armoured Brigade of 7th Armoured Division. The 5th RTR came back to Britain with the division in January 1944 and, equipped with Cromwell tanks, landed in Normandy on 7 June 1944, taking part in the break out from the Normandy beach head, and the drive through France and Belgium into Holland. Ronald was killed in action in Holland on 22 December 1944. He was 23 years old, and is buried at Sittard War Cemetery, Netherlands. Many thanks to Norbert Rosin for the photograph.

John Patrick Collins, Deck Hand, Merchant Navy. John was the son of John and Christina Collins, of Burry Port, and served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS Brinkburn, a Sunderland registered coal carrier. On 21 June 1943, she was part of the small convoy TE-22, on route from Swansea to the Mediterranean, with a cargo of ammunition and government stores, when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-73, off Algiers. Only two of her crew survived, but sadly John was not among them. He was 20 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

 

Michael Denis Collins, Leading Aircraftman, 1381769, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Michael was the son of John and Christina Collins, of Pantglas, and served with 55 Squadron, RAF. The squadron was equipped with the Martin A30 Baltimore IV, and operated in North Africa in support of the Eighth Army. Michael must have been attached to another squadron, as he died in India on 15 August 1943, and is buried at Ranchi War Cemetery, India. He was 22 years old.

 

Olaf Dahle, Able Seaman, Merchant Navy. Olaf was the son of August and Margaret Dahle, of Burry Port, and the grandson of Mrs. R. A. Thomas, of Burry Port. He served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS Rydal Force, a Whitehaven registered cargo ship. Olaf died when she struck a mine and sank on 24 April 1940. He was 20 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

 

Joseph Elved Daniel, Junior Engineer Officer, Merchant Navy. Joseph was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Daniel, and the husband of Ivy Daniel, of Burry Port. He served as an Engineer in the Merchant Navy, aboard the MV Narragansett, a London registered tanker, run by British Petroleum. At 06.09 hours on 25 March 1942, the Narragansett was hit in the stern by one torpedo from U-105 about 400 miles east of Hampton Roads, Virginia and sank with all her crew. Joseph was 26 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

                                                                  

Ernest Edgar Cyril Davies, Flying Officer, 50773, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Ernest was the son of Jack and Sadie Davies; husband of Elisabeth Ann Joan Davies, of Burry Port, and served as a Pilot with 149 Squadron, Royal Air Force. Ernest was killed whilst flying in Stirling III, Serial EF307, which was lost on a Gardening sortie over Kiel Bay on 24 February 1944. He was 23 years old, and is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial, Surrey.

 

Glydon Charles Davies, Sapper, 14342926, Royal Engineers. Glydon was the son of William and Mary Davies, of Burry Port, and the husband of Dorothy Eileen Davies, of Burry Port. He served with the 17th Field Company, Royal Engineers, which was a regular army formation, which had served in France during the retreat to Dunkirk in 1940, attached to the 3rd Infantry Division. After the invasion of Normandy on 6 June 1944, 17th Field Company took part in the drive through France, into Belgium and Holland. Glydon was killed in Holland around the time of the clearing of the Scheldt Canal, on 11 November 1944. He was 33 years old, and is buried at Mierlo War Cemetery, Netherlands, which lies 12 km east of Eindhoven.

 

Leslie Hugh Davies, Sergeant (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner), 1289382, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Leslie was the son of John and Mary Jane Davies, of Burry Port, and the husband of Ceinwen Davies, of Llanelly. He was training as a Wireless Operator/ Air Gunner with the Royal Air Force, and died when his Wellington crashed on 9 September 1942. He was 22 years old, and is buried at Burry Port Cemetery.

Thomas James Davies, Gunner, 1701681, Royal Artillery. Thomas was the son of Thomas James Davies and Mary Davies, of Burry Port. He served with the 130th Battery, 23rd Light Anti Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery. Thomas died on active service on 8 April 1941, aged 30, and is buried at Burry Port Cemetery.

William David Davies, Air Raid Warden. William was the son of George William and Mary Ann Davies, of 2 Bryn Terrace, Burry Port, and the husband of Louvaine Davies, of Eithinman, Trimsaran Road, Trimsaran. He served as an Air Raid Warden, and died when the Royal Ordnance Factory at Pembrey was bombed on 10 July 1940, aged 31.

 

Alford Griffith Edwards, Sergeant, 961445, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Alford was the son of Albert G. Edwards and Esther J. Edwards, of Burry Port,  and served with the Royal Air Force, based in India. Alford died in India on 10 October 1944. He was 28 years old, and is buried at Kirkee War Cemetery, India.

 

Hugh Edwards, Writer, D/MX 66169, Royal Navy. Hugh was the son of Albert Griffiths Edwards and Esther Jane Edwards, of Burry Port, and served with the Royal Navy aboard HMS Barham. She was an old Queen Elizabeth Class Battleship, which had served in the Battle of Jutland during the Great War. In World War II she operated in the Atlantic and Mediterranean, and was struck by three torpedoes from the German Submarine U-331 on 25 November 1941, and sank with the loss of 861 men. Hugh was 23 years old, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

John Evans, Leading Aircraftman, 982547, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. John was the son of Sarah Evans, Kings Head Hotel, Llandyssul. He was stationed at RAF Singapore at the beginning of World War Two, and was sadly killed during the Japanese Invasion of the Island on 14 February 1942. John has no known grave, and so is commemorated on the Singapore Memorial. Many thanks to Nigel Anstey for the photograph. (This may not be the correct man, but no-one else matches).

Thomas John Evans, Leading Aircraftman, 929550, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Thomas was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Gwilym Evans, of Burry Port. He served in the Far East with the Royal Air Force, but was captured in Java during the Japanese invasion. He was killed aboard the ‘Hell Ship’ Suez Maru when she was sunk by the American Submarine USS Bonefish, off Kangean Islands on 29 November 1943. The survivors were massacred by Japanese machine-gun fire. Thomas was 30 years old, and is commemorated on the Singapore Memorial, Singapore.

 

Trefor Evans, Major, 149822, Parachute Regiment. Trefor was originally commissioned into the Royal Artillery, before joining the 6th (10th Bn. The Royal Welch Fusiliers) Battalion, Parachute Regiment. He was killed during the sinking of HMS Abdiel, at Taranto on 10 September 1943. Trefor is commemorated on the Cassino Memorial, Italy.

 

Lawrence Winson Gange, Private, 3970535, Welch Regiment. Lawrence was the son of Charles and Harriet Gange, of Burry Port, and the husband of Margaret Gange. He served with the 1st Battalion, Welch Regiment, which was in Palestine at the outbreak of war. They served in the Western Desert before being moved to Crete, where they were virtually annihilated, before the survivors were evacuated to North Africa. Here they again suffered badly, and were rebuilt before taking part in the Invasions of Sicily and then Italy, which is where Lawrence was killed on 19 September 1944. He was 32 years old, and is buried at Gradara War Cemetery, Italy.

 

Vallance Charles Griffiths, Captain, Royal Artillery. Vallance was the son of Charles and Florence Griffiths, of Liverpool, and the husband of Gladys (Pat) Griffiths, of Liverpool. He served with the 133rd Field Regiment, Royal Artillery, during the North African Campaign, and was killed on 12 May 1943. He was 35 years old, and is buried at Enfidaville War Cemetery, Tunisia.

 

Geoffrey Ham, Private, 5338501, The Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey). Geoffrey was the son of Frederick William and Annie Cecilia Ham, of Burry Port, and served with the 2/6th Battalion, Queen’s Royal West Surrey’s. The battalion had fought during the fall of France in 1940, before moving to the Middle East. Geoffrey was killed during the drive across the desert, near Enfidaville on 29 April 1943. He was 23 years old, and is commemorated on the Medjez-El-Bab Memorial, Tunisia.

 

John Patrick Horne, Bombardier, 4199389, Royal Artillery. John was the son of John and Mary A. Horne, of Cardiff. He served with 1 Heavy Anti Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery, based in the Far East. John was taken prisoner by the Japanese, probably during the fall of Java in March 1942. After almost a year in captivity, John was one of almost 600 gunners of the Royal Artillery who left Changi Jail on Singapore on 18 October 1942, aboard the Kenkon Maru, the destination believed to be New Guinea. However the authorities at Changi were led to believe the ship was subsequently torpedoed and all on board lost. The men were actually executed by the Japanese at Ballali Island on 5 March 1943. John was 23 years old, and is commemorated on the Singapore Memorial, Singapore. Many thanks to Nigel Anstey for the photograph.

Eric John Norman Howell, Sergeant (Air Gunner), 1653086, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Eric was the son of Mr. and Mrs. J. H. Howell, of Burry Port, and served with 40 Squadron, Royal Air Force. The Squadron was equipped with the Vickers Wellington X, based at RAF Foggia Main, Italy after the invasion of Italy in 1943. Eric was killed when his Wellington was shot down over southern France on 10 May 1944. He was 22 years old, and is buried at Mazargues War Cemetery, Marseilles, France.

Ieuan Jenkins, Leading Aircraftman, 1379397, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Ieuan was serving with the Royal Air Force, when he was killed during the explosion of an ammunition train at Catterick Bridge Railway Station in North Yorkshire on 4 February 1944. He was 31 years old and is buried at Burry Port Cemetery.

Alfred Ivor John, Sergeant (Air Bomber), 1837104, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Alfred was the son of George and Margaret Ann John, and the husband of Megan John, of Burry Port, and he served with 102 Squadron, RAFVR, who flew the Handley Page Halifax III, based at RAF Pocklington in North Yorkshire. On the night of 5 January 1945 Alfred's Squadron took part in a massed Bomber Raid on Hannover, Germany. Alfred was killed when his Halifax was shot down over Germany on the raid that night. He was 31 years old, and is buried at Hanover War Cemetery.

 

Aneurin John, Private, 7630316, Royal Army Ordnance Corps. Aneurin served with the Royal Army Ordnance Corps in the Far East. He was taken prisoner by the Japanese during the invasion of Burma, and was one of thousands of POWs put to work on the infamous Thai Burma Railway. Aneurin died while a POW on 23 October 1943, aged 30, and is buried at Kanchanaburi War Cemetery, Malaysia.

Lemuel John, Private, 14416151, Kings Own Yorkshire Light Infantry. Lemuel was the son of William and Mary Anne John, of Burry Port, and served with the 1st Battalion, King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry. Lemuel served with the battalion in North Africa, before taking part in the invasion of Sicily and Italy in 1943. He was killed in Italy on 24 February 1944, aged just 19, and is buried at Minturno War Cemetery, Italy.

 

Maldwyn John, Corporal, 961584, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Maldwyn was the son of William and Mary Ann John. He had served with the Royal Air Force during the war, and died on 3 September 1946. He is buried at Pembrey (Carmel) Independent Chapelyard.

 

John Jones, Second Engineer Officer, Merchant Navy. John lived at 30, Silver Street, Burry Port. He was a long serving engineer with the Merchant Navy and served aboard the Goole registered steamship S.S. Greenawn. On 3 April 1941 Greenawn was en-route from London to Invergordon with a cargo of cement when she was lost with all hands, presumably due to enemy action. John was 67 years old when he died that day and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

 

Jack Gordon Jones, Able Seaman, D/JX 313627, Royal Navy. Jack was born on 11 May 1921, the son of Thomas George and Elsie Jones, of Connah's Quay, Flintshire. He was based at the shore establishment, HMS President III, but was attached to the transport ship MV Prins Harald. On 20 November 1942 Prins Harald was attached to Convoy KMS 3G, which was bound for North Africa, carrying war materials for Operation Torch. She was torpedoed some 240 miles west of Gibraltar by the German submarine U-263 and sunk with the loss of twelve men. Jack is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

Oliver Jones, Private, 3963311, Welch Regiment. Oliver was the son of William and Margaret Jones, and the husband of Gladwen Jones, of Burry Port. He served with the 4th Battalion, Welch Regiment, which was the Carmarthenshire Territorial Battalion. Oliver died at sea while training on 2 July 1940. He was 36 years old, and is commemorated on the Brookwood Memorial, Surrey.

Rees Lloyd Jones, Stoker 1st Class, D/KX111150, Royal Navy. Rees was born at Newfoundland, Colby Road, Burry Port on 17 June 1916 and served in the Royal Navy aboard HMS Exeter. She was a York Class Heavy Cruiser, which had been commissioned in 1931, and had fought at the Battle of the River Plate just after the outbreak of war in 1939. After being refitted due to heavy damage during the Battle, she spent time on escort duties in the North Sea, before moving to the Pacific Fleet in 1941. Exeter was sunk by the Japanese during the Second Battle of the Java Sea on 1 March 1942. Rees was among 800 of her crew taken prisoner, and died in captivity of dysentery at Macassar, Celebes on 14 March 1945. He is buried at Ambon War Cemetery, Indonesia.

S. Jones, Fireman, Merchant Navy. Cannot be positively identified.

 

Thomas King, Ordinary Seaman, P/JX 253120, Royal Navy. Thomas was born in Poplar, London on 7 July 1907, the son of Mary Ann King. He served with the Royal Navy and was based at HMS Lucifer, in Swansea. He drowned in Burry Port harbour on 4 April 1942, and is buried at Burry Port Cemetery.

Joseph Lawlor. Joseph was the son of the late John and Winefride Lawlor, of Clonkeen, Maryboro, Leix, Irish Republic, and the husband of Mary K. Lawlor, of 64 Ardwyn, Garden Suburb, Burry Port. He had served with distinction during the Great War, and was Mentioned in Despatches three times for his bravery. During World War Two, Joseph worked at the Royal Ordnance Factory at Pembrey. He died there during an Air Raid on 10 July 1940, aged 55.

 

Vernon John Martell Lewis, Second Radio Officer, Merchant Navy. Vernon was the son of William John and Mary Margaretta Lewis, of Burry Port, and served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS Irene Maria, a London registered cargo ship. On 28 November 1940, Irene Maria was in the North Atlantic, when she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U-95 with the loss of twenty-five of her crew. Vernon was 18 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

David Reginald McKibbin, Private, 3959462, Welch Regiment. David was the son of Edward and Julia McKibbin, of Burry Port, and served with the 1st Battalion, Welch Regiment. The battalion was based in Palestine at the outbreak of war, before fighting in the Western Desert. It then moved to Crete, where it was virtually annihilated during the fall of the Island to German paratroopers in May 1941. The survivors returned to North Africa where the battalion was rebuilt before moving to the Sudan. David died in the Sudan on 9 December 1942. He was 24 years old, and is buried at Khartoum War Cemetery, Sudan.

 

D. J. Morgans, Leading Aircraftman, Royal Air Force. Cannot be positively identified.

 

William Ivor Mexsom, Leading Stoker, D/K 59938, Royal Navy. William was the son of John and Mary Mexsom, and the husband of Violet Esme Mexsom, of Llanelly. He served in the Royal Navy aboard HMS Trinidad, which was a Fiji Class Cruiser. She took part in the Russian Convoys, and was attacked by a Squadron of Junkers 88 bombers when returning from Murmansk, while escorting convoy PQ-13 on 14 May 1942. She was so badly damaged that she was scuttled and sank on 15 May 1942. William was killed during the bombing of the Trinidad on 14 May. He was 37 years old, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

Luttrell Thomas Morris, Private, 13045810, Pioneer Corps. Luttrell was the son of John and Mary Morris, of Burry Port, and served with the Pioneer Corps. He took part in the invasion of Normandy, and the subsequent drive through France and Belgium into Holland in 1944. Luttrell was killed during the push into Germany on 2 March 1945. He was 29 years old, and is buried at Venray War Cemetery, Netherlands.

Dewi Marlais Nedhal, Flying Officer, 138211, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Dewi was the son of Roderick and Esther Nedahl, of Burry Port, and served with 255 Squadron, RAF. The Squadron were based at Lata in 1943 flying the Bristol Beaufighter VIF, based at Bo Rizzo, and Dewi was taking part in a flight on 26 September 1943 when his aircraft was lost. He was 22 years old and is commemorated on the Malta Memorial.

Daniel Charles Owens, Private, 3969396, Hampshire Regiment. Daniel was the son of Thomas and Eleanor Owens, and the husband of Mary Violet Owens, of St. Thomas, Swansea. He served with the 5th Battalion, Hampshire Regiment during the North African campaign, before taking part in the invasion of Sicily and Italy in 1943. Daniel was killed in Italy on 9 September 1943, and is buried at Salerno War Cemetery, Italy. He was 25 years old.

 

Edgar Duncan Owens, Guardsman, 2736296, Welsh Guards. Edgar was the son of Frank and Beatrice Owens, and the husband of Flora Owens, of Llanelly. He served with the 3rd Battalion, Welsh Guards, which moved to North Africa in 1943. Edgar was killed in North Africa on 8 May 1943. He was 29 years old, and is buried at Enfidaville War Cemetery, Tunisia.

 

Elwyn Rees Owen, Sergeant (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner), 975305, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Elwyn was the son of Thomas John and Mary Owen, of Burry Port. He served with 221 Squadron, which was equipped with the Vickers Wellington IC, based at RAF Bircham Newton. Elwyn was killed in an air crash on 10 April 1941. He was 20 years old, and is buried at Pembrey (St. Illtyd) Churchyard.

Edwin Henry Persson, Assistant Cook, Merchant Navy. Edwin was the son of Dorothy Persson, of Burry Port, and served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS Port Hunter, a London registered cargo liner. At 09.00 on 11 July 1942, Port Hunter, carrying a general cargo including ammunition and depth charges, was ordered to detach from convoy OS.33 and to proceed ahead independently to Durban for refuelling before continuing to Auckland, New Zealand. At 23.45 she was attacked and sunk by the German submarine U-582, with the loss of 89 passengers and crew. Edwin was 25 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

John Owen S. Picton, Flight Sergeant (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner), 1836107, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. John was the son of Thomas Owen Picton and Margaret Picton, of Burry Port, and served with 189 Squadron, Royal Air Force. The Squadron was a heavy bomber unit, equipped with the Avro Lancaster I, based at RAF Fulbeck. John died when his Lancaster was shot down over Germany on 7 March 1945. He was 19 years old, and is buried at Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany.

 

Albert Leslie Putz, Second Radio Officer, Merchant Navy. Albert was the son of Albert Edgar and Margaret Jane Putz, of Burry Port, and served in the Merchant Navy aboard the MV Empire Comet, a Greenock registered cargo vessel. Empire Comet sailed from Bombay on 12 November 1941 for Manchester, with a cargo of manganese ore, tea, groundnuts and linseed oil, as part of Convoy HX-174. On 17 February 1942 the Empire Comet was intercepted by the German submarine U-136 West of Rockall, and was sunk by a torpedo, with the loss of all hands. Albert was 19 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

Oscar Llewellyn Randell. Oscar was the son of Charles and Susannah Randell, of 82, Elkington Road, Burry Port, and the husband of Mary Randell, of Mount Pleasant, Craig, Burry Port. He was badly injured during an Air Raid on the Royal Ordnance Factory, at Pembrey on 10 July 1940, and died the same day at Llanelly Hospital, aged 54

 

Ernest Rees, Fusilier, 3967858, Royal Welch Fusiliers. Ernest was the son of Walter and Ann Rees, of Burry Port, and served with the 1st Battalion, Royal Welch Fusiliers. The battalion moved to the Far East in 1942, after having been among the units of the BEF evacuated from Dunkirk in 1940. They remained in India and Burma for most of the war, fighting in terrible conditions. Ernest died in Burma on 28 May 1944. He was 23 years old, and is commemorated on the Rangoon Memorial, Myanmar.

George Iorwerth Rees, Sergeant (Air Bomber), 1601916, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. George was the son of John and Lettice Ann Rees, of Burry Port, and served with 178 Squadron, Royal Air Force. The Squadron was equipped with the Boeing B-24 Liberator VI, based at Amendola after the invasion of Italy. George was killed in Italy on 11 October 1944. He was 22 years old, and is buried at Padua War Cemetery, Italy.

L. Rees, Stoker, Merchant Navy. Cannot be positively identified.

 

Robert Patrick Rees, Sergeant (Air Gunner), 1339107, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Robert served as an Air Gunner with 102 Squadron, Royal Air Force. The Squadron was equipped with the Halifax heavy bomber, and was based at RAF Pocklington. Robert was killed when his Halifax was shot down on a raid over Germany on 20 February 1944. He is buried at Hanover War Cemetery, Germany.

 

Vivian John Rees, Able Seaman, D/JX 214826, Royal Navy. Vivian was the son of John and Elizabeth Rees, of Burry Port, and served in the Royal Navy aboard HMS Matabele. She was a Tribal Class Destroyer, which had been commissioned in 1939. She had seen action with the Home Fleet at the outbreak of war, and took part in the Norway Convoys. In January 1942 she was an escort ship for the cruiser HMS Trinidad, in Convoy PQ-8 from Iceland to Murmansk. The convoy departed on 11 January, and came under torpedo attack on 16 January. On 17 January 1942 Matabele was hit by a torpedo from U-454 and sank almost immediately, with the loss of all but two of her crew. Vivian was 21 years old, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

Wynford Rees, Second Engineer Officer, Merchant Navy. Wynford was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Rees, of Burry Port, and served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS The Monarch, a Glasgow registered merchant vessel. On 20 June 1940, The Monarch was struck by a torpedo fired by the German submarine U-52, and sank with the loss of all hands. Wynford was 21 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

 

Robert Lloyd Richards, Lieutenant, 295900, Royal Armoured Corps. Robert was the son of the Reverend Daniel Richards, B.A., B.D., and Hilda Richards, of the Vicarage, Maesteg. He had been born at Burry Port, and was commissioned into the Inns of Court Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps. The regiment was an armoured car unit, and landed on Juno Beach on D-Day, 6 June 1944. It was a reconnaissance unit, and headed the advance of I Corps when it broke out of the Normandy beach-head. Robert was killed in France on 21 August 1944. He was 22 years old and is buried at Avernes-Sous-Exmes Churchyard, France.

Arthur George Scales, Private, 14418241, Devonshire Regiment. Arthur was the son of Arthur and Clara Gwyneth Scales, of Burry Port, and served with the 1st Battalion, Devonshire Regiment. The battalion was in India at the outbreak of war, and by 1943 were in Burma, attached to the 36th Division. Arthur died in India on 29 July 1944. He was 19 years old, and is buried at Imphal War Cemetery, India.

David George Roderick Thomas, Gunner, 1704767, Royal Artillery. David was born in Burry Port in 1906, the son of Harold and Lucetta Thomas. Both of his parents died within the following two years, and David was raised by his grandmother, Elizabeth Anne Thomas, at Brynhafod, Burry Port. During the war he served with 248 Battery, 79th (Herts Yeomanry) Heavy Anti Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery. David was wounded, and died on 23 February 1941, aged 36. He is buried at Pembrey (St. Illtyd) Churchyard.

David Ronald Thomas, Corporal, 3060026, Royal Armoured Corps. David was the son of Lewis and Selina Thomas, of Burry Port, and served with the 49th (West Riding) Reconnaissance Regiment, Royal Armoured Corps. The Regiment landed in Normandy just after D-Day, and took part in the break out from Normandy, and in the drive into Holland through France and Belgium. It then took part in the Battle of Arnhem, before moving towards Germany. David was killed on 12 March 1945. He was 25 years old, and is buried at Jonkerbos War Cemetery, Netherlands.

William Henry Thomas, Signalman, 14206564, Royal Corps of Signals. William was the son of William John and Maria Thomas, of Burry Port, and served with the Royal Corps of Signals in North Africa. William died at Benghazi on 13 February 1943. He was 20 years old, and is buried at Benghazi War Cemetery, Libya.

 

David John Williams, Chief Stoker, P/K 51630, Royal Navy. David was the son of David and Martha Williams, and the husband of Jane Williams, of Burry Port. He served in the Royal Navy aboard HMS Barham, an old Queen Elizabeth Class Battleship, which had served in the Battle of Jutland during the Great War. In World War II she operated in the Atlantic and Mediterranean, and was struck by three torpedoes from the German Submarine U-331 on 25 November 1941, and sank with the loss of 861 men. David was 47 years old, and is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial, Devon.

 

Leslie Glyndon Williams, Fireman & Trimmer, Merchant Navy. Leslie was the son of Evan and Sarah Williams, of Burry Port, and served in the Merchant Navy aboard the SS Ocean Viceroy, a Glasgow registered Liberty Ship. On 29 March 1943, she was in the Atlantic, as part of convoy SL-26, when she was damaged by a torpedo from the German submarine U-662, but managed to limp away to safety. Leslie was killed in the explosion though. He was 25 years old, and is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

Thomas Henry Williams, Signalman, 2342946, Royal Corps of Signals. Thomas was the son of David and Harriet Williams, and the husband of Marion Kathleen Williams, of Burry Port. He served with 5 Air Formation Signals, Royal Corps of Signals, which served in the Middle East, in support of the Royal Air Force. They had been formed in Cyprus on 21 February 1942, and had moved to Palestine by 1943. Thomas was killed there, sometime between 26 and 27 August 1943. He was 24 years old, and is buried at Ramleh War Cemetery, Israel.

Trevor Conway Williams, Gunner, 1818943, Royal Artillery. Trevor was the son of Jeffrey and Sarah Williams, of 22, Mansel Street, Burry Port. He resided in Pontarddulais prior to the war and served with 21 Light Anti Aircraft Regiment, Royal Artillery. The battery was a Territorial unit, and on 6 December 1941, sailed in Convoy WS14 from the Clyde bound for the Middle East. The regiment then moved to the Far East, with two batteries on airfields in East Java, and one battery in Timor. Trevor was probably taken prisoner by the Japanese early in 1942, and died on 25 November 1942. He is commemorated on the Singapore Memorial, Singapore. Many thanks to Nigel Anstey for the photograph.

Trevor Matthias Owen Williams, Ships Surgeon, Merchant Navy. Trevor was born in Burry Port in 1883, the son of Dr. Trevor Owen Williams, M.D., and Emily Williams, and was the husband of Sarah Williams, of Devonport, Tasmania. He had qualified B.A. (Cantab.), and L.A.H. (Dublin), before taking up a career in the Merchant Navy, serving as Ships Surgeon aboard the SS Aguila, a Liverpool registered passenger steamer. Aguila was on route from Liverpool for Gibraltar and Lisbon in Convoy OG-71 on 19 August 1941, carrying a cargo of 400 bags of mail, when she was torpedoed by German submarine U-201 and sunk. The Aguila was the ship of the convoy commodore Vice-Admiral Patrick E. Parker, DSO, RN, and sank within 90 seconds, with the loss of 152 lives. Trevor was 58 years old and is commemorated along with his fellow shipmates on the Tower Hill Memorial, London.

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4 May 2017. Welcome news this morning that a new CWGC headstone has been erected in Laugharne for Domingo Mobile, a sailor who I found to be buried there a couple of years ago. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

8 March 2017. Some more good news today. Another un-commemorated Welsh sailor, Samuel Arthur Griffiths, of Tredegar, has today been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC as a result of my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

8 February 2017. Some more good news today. Another un-commemorated soldier, Llewelyn Owen Roberts, of Penmaenmawr, has today been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC as a result of my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

 

7 February 2017. Some more good news today. Another un-commemorated soldier, Isaac Owen, of Seven Sisters, has today been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC as a result of my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

20 December 2016. Some good news today that another uncommemorated soldier, Private Thomas Owen Davies, of Machynlleth, has been accepted for commemoration by the CWGC following my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for further details.

30 November 2016. At long last my latest book has been published: Welsh Yeomanry at War. Please see the Steve’s Books page of the website for details.

23 November 2016. Some good news today with the acceptance of another Welsh soldier, Percy Griffin Williams, of the Welsh Horse Yeomanry, for commemoration by the CWGC following my research. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for details.

 

15 November 2016. I would like to thank the people of Laugharne, especially the members of the Laugharne and District Historical Society, for their welcome during their recent History Event on Saturday when I visited to make a talk about how researching the Laugharne War Memorial inspired me to create this website and to begin my writing career. It was a very interesting day and was well attended by the locals.

26 Sep 2016. After a lot of hard work I have finally managed to identify a soldier from Gwaun-cae-Gurwen, Morgan Price James, who since the early 1920’s has been commemorated by the CWGC under the wrong name, James Morgan. Please see the Forgotten Soldiers section of the website for details.

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