The Wartime Memories Project - The Second World War



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S/Sgt. Carl Eugene Bohannon .     United States Army CAC F Btry 200th CA Regt. (AA) Coast Artillery Corps   from New Mexico)



Sergeant Arthur Reginald Bohn .     RAF VR 428 Squadron (d.23rd September 1943)

I would be glad to get in contact with anyone who may remember the crew of Halifax LK-635 NA-H of 428 squadron, pilot F/O Mcrae. In his crew was Sgt James Wright an great-uncle of my wife. All killed on Ops 22/23 Sept 1943 Hannover Raid.

The crew were:

  • F/O Hector Earl McRae RCAF J/20195, killed age 23 (Runnymede Memorial)
  • Sgt Donald Ernest Jeffery, RAF VR 1862968, killed (Runnymede Memorial)
  • Sgt Leonard Cotton, RAF VR 1516171, killed age 22 (Runnymede Memorial)
  • Flt/Sgt Walter Edward Dickson RCAF R/1556913, killed (Runnymede Memorial)
  • Sgt Arthur Reginald Bohn, RAF VR 1415741, killed (Runnymede Memorial)
  • Sgt James Wright, RAF VR 1590868, killed (Runnymede Memorial)
  • Sgt Edward George Miller, RCAF R/183626, killed, age 19 (Runnymede Memorial)



  • Cpl. Thomas Peter Bohn .     United States Army A Bty 200th CA Regt. (AA) Coastal Artillery Corps   from Missouri)



    Tech 5th grade T/5 Armand F. Boisseau Purple Heart.     US Army 1st Bn. Hq Bty wire detail 941st Field Artilery Rgt.   from Manchester, New Hampshire, USA)

    The N.H. Army National Guard 1940 - 1943 2nd Bn. 172nd FA Rgmt. (hvy) truck-drawn 155mm Gun part one: In a re-organization after the First World War, the NH National Guard departed from its infantry roots to become the 172nd Field Artillery and the 197th Coastal Artillery. A generation later both were at war, the 172nd in Europe and the 197th in the Pacific. The 172nd Field Artillery traces its origins back to Capt. Waldron's Minute Company, 2nd N.H. Regiment, organized in 1775. During the Revolutuionar War this regiment served in the Continental Army as part of the 8th Continental Regiment, which earned battle credits for the Boston, Canada, Lake Champlain, Trenton, Princeton, Saratoga, Monmouth, Iroquois & Northern Dept. campaigns. Also credited with participation in the Civil War, WWI and WWII. The battalions saltire in the DUI of the 172nd FA is for Civil War service; the cactus for the Mexican border service; and the fleur-de-lis for service during WWI.

    It all started for me when I joined the N.H. Army National Guard 4 Oct 1940 at 19. Assigned & assembled to the 2nd Bn 172nd FA Rgmt. 155mm Fld Guns (Heavy) truck-drawn. Commanding Officer was LtCol John F. Ahern, XO. Maj Thomas C. Werner and M/Sgt Mathew H. Korzyniowski as battalion Senior Sergeant. I was assigned to D Bty as an assistant prime-mover truck driver towing 155mm Field Guns using GMC's and Diamond Mfg 4x6 heavy-duty trucks and on occasion the M3 Armored Halftrack tracked truck in Motor Pool Platoon. This was an excellent artillery battalion lead by smart hard working officer's that always set the best example, mature and educated they were attuned to the needs of both the Army and the men under their command. Our training was good very good, Col. Ahern insisted on lots of drill time and as much field maneuvers as the Army could afford to give us. Most of the men that made up the battalion were from Manchester, others were from either Concord, Dover ,Portsmouth and Nashua. From the time I joined the Guard till the time we were inducted into federal service we held most of our field maneuvers in the southern training camps, Camp Blanding Florida, Camp Shelby Mississippi, the Great Louisiana Maneuvers also known as "The Big One" where half a million men & 19 Army Divisions trained prepairing to enter WWII and Camp Bowie Texas.

    After the Japanise Empire attacked Pearl Harbor, Hawaii on Dec 7th 1941 rumors of activation into federal service started to spread throughout the battalion and our outfit were sure we were going to war. Camp Blanding and Camp Shelby under Third Army Southern Defence "training" Command were our first and most frequented training camps, it was at these two camps we trained the most and became very proficient at move, setup and direct fire support missions in the worst possible weather conditions. Deep thick forrest,raining swamps, snakes and mosquitoes we would move our guns, equipment and service batteries stop again and set-up for another firing mission, break position/camp and move out again again and again, over and over it didn't seem to stop for any long period of time. They were very few to little complaints and every man I knew did the best he could and we never left anyone behind left alone to do his job, we were a team. .

    Most all of us were from New Hampshire and spoke french frequently together off duty and after hours. The Colonal whom also spoke french insisted we all maintained speaking english during all active duty drill assignments and official working hours, he would impose a heafty fine if we disobeyed this order..

    Camp Bowie Texas just outside Brownwood was another training camp that was to introduce us to the hot sandy desert, it was here we started to receive our new guns the 4.5". Learning later that they were a US modified British design of a 155mm to accomindate US Artillery units with larger rounds using the same guns leaving for the Theather of Operations, I didn't pay much attention to them because my job was to to "gettum" there!..

    In between maneuvers the battalion returned to New Hampshire for stand down, so HQ's can start planning the next field maneuvers. Home always seemed too far away when you were not there. My Dad, wife and brothers were always waiting for me at the train station like so many other guardsmen there when the unit did come home. Families reunited, birthday wedding parties planned, and buisnesses to run. We had no idea our next training maneuver would be the toughest, longest and our last, the Southern California desert, Camp "Iron Mountain"..

    172nd Field Artillery Regiment (155mm How)(Truck-D) N.H. National Guard 24Feb41 inducted into federal service at Manchester N.H.; transferred to Cp Blanding Fla.14Feb41 & assigned to IV Army Corps; arrived at Cp Shelby Miss 27Mar42 where HHB redesignated HHB, 172nd Field Artillery Group 1Mar43. 1st and 2nd Bns. redesignated 172nd and 941st Field Artillery Battalions, respectively.



    F/O Leslie Claude William Boivin .     Royal Air Force pilot 106 Sqd. (d.30th Aug 1944)

    F/O Boivin lost his life on the 30th of August 1944 when his Lancaster ND331 was lost on ops.

    The crew were:

    • F/O L.C.W.Boivin
    • Sgt S.Bell
    • Sgt W.S.Bryson
    • F/S J.P.Nicol
    • F/S R.H.McLean
    • Sgt E.G.L.Parker
    • Sgt H.Hargill



    Kan Wilhelms Hendrik Bolder .     Dutch Army



    Bmdr. Walter Bollands .     British Army Light Anti Aircraft Royal Artillery   from Middlesbrough)

    Walter Bollands is my grandfather. He served 1939 -1945 in England, India, Malta and USA. He enlisted on the 23rd of September 1939, aged 40 in Middlesbrough and joined the Corps of Royal Artillery Light Anti Aircraft as a Gunner (Army No 1482498) On the 14th of April 1941 he was posted to 4th Regiment Maritime Anti-Aircraft Royal Artillery. on the 4th of February 1942 he was reported Missing at Sea whilst serving as a Bombardier Royal Artillery, (Gunners of the Royal Artillery Maritime Regiment manned the Bofors gun) He was demobbed on the 29th of September 1945.



    Flight Sergeant J A Bolle .     RAFVR 59 Squadron



    Pvt. Hugh Murray Bolten .     United States Army B Bty. 59th Coastal Artillery Coastal Artillery Corps



    Sgt Frank Bolton .     RAFVR 9 Sqd.   from Liverpool)

    (d.22nd Mar 1944)

    I am trying to collate information about my uncle Frank Bolton for my mum and would be grateful if anyone has any memories of him or information to give.



    Sergeant H Bolton .     RAF VR 59 Squadron



    Mjr. Howard Burton Bolton .     British Army Royal Signals

    My grandfather Howard Burton was Royal Signals paymaster at Catterick Camp during WW2. He was unable to participate in active service due to loosing a lung from pneumonia following an operation to remove his appendix.



    Flying Officer I E Bolton .     RAF VR 59 Squadron



    Able Seaman Walter George Bolton .     Royal Navy HMS Forfar   from Boston, Lincolnshire)

    (d.2nd Dec 1940)



    Pte. Walter Gladwin " " Bolton .     Canadian Army Perth Regiment   from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada)

    (d.17th Jan 1944)

    For a year I have been searching for my Grandfather, it has always been a chip on my mothers shoulder as to why in all the years he never made any contact. Her mother was in London and when she was a year four old, she was sent to Ireland to live with her grand mother, she never saw her mother after that, and had only a phone call a few years ago to say her mother passed away.



    Walter Gladwin Bolton .     Royal Canadian Artillery

    I am trying hard to find my mother's father, Walter Bolton she never saw him nor knows much about him. Her mother was a nurse in WW2 in London and was in the Royal Canadian Artillery .all I've got to go on is what is on my mum's birth cert. He is down as Walter Gladwin Bolton bdr 28052 Royal Canadian Artillery {steel worker}.

    I can only find one Walter Bolton and he died in 1944 and is buried in Moro, Italy. On one paper it gives date of his death and said he has a one year old daughter he had never seen. The dates match my mother's birth. How can I be sure?

    Editor's note: Walter Bolton buried at Moro has a different middle name, regiment and service number so is unlikley to be the same person. Check our Family History Hints & Tips for more sources to search.



    WO. Ivor Hextor Bond .     Royal Air Force   from 31 Chermside Road, Liverpool)

    Ivor Hextor Bond was stationed at Ludford Magna during the War. He was a Warrant Officer and his plane was lost, with apparently no survivors, some where over Germany. I am trying too find out where he was shot down and if any one was recovered or any wreckage was found. His father remarried my Mum in the 60s and I am trying to complete the family tree.



    W/O Ivor Hexter Bond .     Royal Air Force 101 Sqd.   from Liverpool)

    (d.7th Aug 1945)

    Ivor Bond, would have been my step brother if he had survived the War. He was lost without trace on the night of the 7th August 1945 along with the rest of the crew on a raid over Dessau. I am doing the family history bit and trying to gain as much info and photos as possible. We visited the old airfield Ludford Magna last year and took some photos of the remains of the airfield and the accomodation huts. He and the rest of the crew are remembered at Runnymede.



    Sgm. Valiant Bond .     British Army Royal Corps of Signals



    Able Seaman William George Bond .     Royal Navy HMS Emerald   from 17 Orlando street, Bootle, Liverpool, L20.)

    I am attempting to trace my father, William George Bond's service history. On my birth certificate, he was listed as and A/B serving aboard "HMS Emerald" in April 1935(year of my birth). After WW2, I am told he joined the Merchant navy, sailing with Cunard from Liverpool to mainly to USA. I have no other records-documentation belonging to him. Any confirmation, or information would be gratefully received.



    Cpl. Alfred Frank Bone .     British Army



    F/S W. S. Bonell .     RCAF 514 Sqd. (d.30th Jul 1944)

    F/S Bonell was lost without trace over the English Channel on the 30th of July 1944 when the aircraft failed to return to Waterbeach after a raid on Caen.



    Sld. Wilhelm Bongers .     Dutch Army



    P/O James C. Boodrie .     Royal Air Force 16 OTU. (d.15th Jan 1943)

    James Boodrie was killed along with Sgt R E Keene when Wellington BJ763 of 16OTU crashed at Aynho village on 15th January 1943. I am his nephew and was named after him.



    Pte. Arthur J. Booker .     Army Royal West Kent Regiment

    Back row (left to right): 1) unknown 2) Wally Symes 3) Arthur Booker, 4) unknown 5) Mick Dowling

    Front row (left to right): 1) Gerry Rush 2) Dick Berryman 3) Les Botcher 4) Ginger Kett 5) Jimmy Beatle.

    WHERE ARE THEY NOW?

    • I joined the British Army in Nineteen Thirty-Nine
    • I really did enjoy myself and thought that life was fine
    • But in France I was captured a Royal West Kent
    • Pride of the Army but to Deutschland I went.

    • Into a big Stalag they called it VIII B
    • We had breakfast, no dinner and no blooming tea
    • They sent us out working we were just skin and bone
    • And Mittenbruck Silesia became our new home

    • There I met lots of pals t'was long, long ago
    • But where are they now that's what I'd like to know
    • Gerry Rush and Mick Dowling slept in the next bed
    • And a fellow called Andrews he slept overhead.

    • Sgt. Don Eager or Edgar I'm never quite sure
    • He helped me a lot when conditions were poor
    • And young Ginger Kett with his mout organ band
    • Called Kat and his Kit-Kats were really quite grand

    • And to all other chaps who were held by the "Hun"
    • In that little old camp called E91
    • If you remember ole Book and Benny his mate
    • Then let's get in touch before it's too late!

    This is a poem written by my Father, Arthur Booker, if anyone remembers him or his fellow POW's please get in touch.



    Pte. Arthur Booker .     East Yorkshire Regiment

    My Grandad, Private Arthur Booker served with the East Yorkshire Regiment ans was a pow in Stalag IVB. He never talked to my mum about the war and he died in 1983. But I know that he was captured three times by the Germans & escaped twice, once from Stalag IVB.



    L/Cpl. Robert Booker .     British Army



    William L. Booker .     United States Air Force 477th Bombardment Group   from Kirkland, WA)

    William L. Booker was one of the first black military aviators known as the Tuskegee Airmen. He served as a navigator and flight engineer on B-25 bombers with the 477th Bombardment Group based at Godman Field, Kentucky. He flew with all-black crews with pilots trained in Alabama at Tuskegee Institute.



    Cpl. Jack Rider Boon, .     Australian Army



    Sgt. David Louis Boorer .     British Army East Surrey Regiment




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