The Wartime Memories Project - The Second World War

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Those who Served

Allied Forces - Browse by Surname.

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Axis Forces - Browse by Surname.

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John William Zabarylo .     Royal Air Force 419 Sqdn.   from Canada)

My father, John William Zabarylo was an airframe mechanic from Canada. I am sure he served with 419 Squadron, but was told that mechanics were shuffled around in the Command and sent to where they were needed most.

WO1. Alexander Orest "Chiefy" Zacharuk MID.     Royal Canadian Air Force Bomb Aimer 432 Squadron   from Mirror, Alberta, Canada)


Alexander Zacharuk's citation reads: "Under a calm and quiet manner he has always maintained a fine offensive spirit in action which inspired confidence in his crew members and other crews in his flight. Eleven of his 26 operational sorties have been over heavily defended targets in Germany, such as Dusseldorf, Essen, Brunswick, Berlin (three times), Stuttgart and Frankfurt."

Halifax NP706 (QO-J) took off at 0326 hours, on the 18th of July 1944 from East Moor to bomb fortified positions facing the Allied push towards Caen. The aircraft was shot down in flames by flak.

This was a very experienced crew whose skipper had flown 31 operations. the crew consisted of:

  • F/Sgt R E Burton (RCAF) was mortally wounded and is buried in Bretteville-sur-Laine Canadian War Cemetery.
  • F/L J.H. Cooper (RCAF, POW),
  • Sergeant S.D. Wright (RCAF, POW),
  • Sergeant H.E. Oakeby (evader),
  • F/O R.P. Dryden (RCAF, POW),
  • WO2 A. Zacharuk (RCAF, evader),
  • WO1 K.E. Elliott (RCAF, POW),
  • F/L J.H. Cooper was interned in Camp L3, POW No.7607,
  • F/O R.P. Dryden in Camp L1, POW No.5171,
  • WO1 K.E. Elliott in Camp L7, POW No.452
  • Sergeant S.D. Wright, in Camp L7 POW No.500.

Pte. Nicholas Zahra .     British Army Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers   from Cairo, Egypt)

(d.20th May 1943)

Nicholas Zahra was buried in the family tomb in the Old Cairo New Latin Cemetery in Egypt.

W/O Lewis Zalsburg DFM.     Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve 511 Sqd. (d.4th July 1943)

Warrant Officer (Navigator (Bomber)) Zalsburg was buried in the Gibraltar (North Front) Jewish Cemetery in Gibraltar.

Pte. Jack L. Zamansky .     British Army 5th Battalion Queens Own Cameron Highlanders   from Glasgow)

(d.23rd March 1943)

Louis Zamperini .     United States Army Air Force   from Torrance, California)

Louis Zamperini, an Olympic distance runner and World War II veteran who survived 47 days on a raft in the Pacific after his bomber crashed, then endured two years in Japanese prison camps, died on 4th July 2014. He was 97.

He is the subject of Laura Hillenbrand's best-selling book "Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption," which is being made into a movie directed by Angelina Jolie and is scheduled for a December release by Universal.

In World War II, he was a bombardier on a U.S. Army Air Forces bomber that crashed in the Pacific Ocean during a reconnaissance mission. He and one of the other surviving crew members drifted for 47 days on a raft in shark-infested waters before being captured by Japanese forces. He spent more than two years as a prisoner of war, surviving torture.

S/Sgt. John Michael Zanetis .     United States Army Air Force Airplane Crew Chief 750 702nd Bomb Sq   from Vincennes)

My father was Airplane Crew Chief for 702nd Bomb Squadron. He was originally from Griffin, Indiana. He passed away in 1979 of a heart attack in Vincennes Indiana. I'd love to hear from anyone who knew him or whose parentd might have known him. Thank you all and God Bless.

Flying Officer W C Zapfe .     RCAF 59 Squadron

Bmdr. Franciszek Zebrowski .     Polish Army   from Jodki, Poland)

Frank Zebrowski and his unit were a horseback unit. They were sent to the front with a rifle and five bullets. Unbelievable issue for war. Their train unloaded in Warsaw and they marched to the front. The Germans pushed them all the way back across the width of Poland to Sudowna Wisna, a town 30 miles east of Lwow. They were surrounded and captured. He was searched and his horse was taken away. He was sent to Camp IV-A in Chojezwerda, issued with the number #9372. He was forced to work on farms in the vicinity.

F/O. William Zelicovitz .     Royal Air Force 437 Squadron   from Ottawa)

William Zelicovitz served with 232, 575 and 437 Squadron.

Orpha Theldon Ziegler .     United States Army Army Corps of Engineers

Orpha Theldon Ziegler was a wounded officer of the Army Corps of Engineers. He spent time at Oflag 64 and Oflag 3-A in Luckenwalde. He walked out of Walkenwalde before the official liberation by the Russians.

Pte. Rudolph Frank Ziemski .     Canadian Army Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders   from Winnipeg, Manitoba)

Sgt. Zilole .     British Army Rhodesian African Rifles (d.4th June 1944)

Sgt. Zilole is commemorated on the Lubudi Memorial in the Congo.

Cpl. Peter Frederick "Pete" Zimmer .     United States Army 47 Infantry, 9 Division   from Flushing, NY)

My father's words months before his death from cancer in 1997. He was captured in Tunisia, Palm Sunday 1943, and reunited Palm Sunday, 1945. Jack Refer to the map, it's a small scale of Germany with most of the prison camps. Transferred by boat "German" to Naples, Italy. After 3 weeks in Italy transferred by box car to Moosberg, Germany. Registered with the Red Cross, then after 3 weeks again put on box cars to Stalag 3B Furstenberg where we were confined until the Russians pushed within some 7 to 10 miles from the camp.

Marched from Stalag 3B towards Stalag 3A, however a small contingent was broken off and sent to a small work camp in Luckenwalde. We were there from approximately Jan 1945 to the beginning of April 1945.

During this time we, Art Rosenberg and myself, decided we would break from the column and try to get to American troops. While waiting to move out the released Russian prisoners stole our stored extra food and we had none left. At this time we took in a loner, Aid Mersfelder from Monhegan Island, Maine, who knew our plans and volunteered his food. Broke from the column on the second day, Germans thinking we were stupid and could not understand orders and gave up on us. After 2 exciting and harrowing days of freedom we came across about 10 French POWs at the side of a small intersection of country roads. Their apparent leader was a younger former policeman from Paris who approached me telling us the Americans were on this road to the left, or east. He said we had to go through these tanks and Germans, who were standing around smoking and appeared confused themselves. The Frenchman stated we walk in the center of his men, bend over and shuffle your feet, not straight up like Americans. Scary part of the whole thing, I could have touched the tanks. After a half day we got to the Elbe where we found hundreds of French POWs who had been there several days afraid to move over the levee to the river. We took Art's tee shirt and waved it and moved over to the levee, where 3 Americans came in a small private boat, took on us 3 Americans, a few British who were there, and took over the French in several trips.Ironically the day of capture was Palm Sunday 1943, back to Americans Palm Sunday 1945.

Flt.Sgt. Leonard William Zingelmann .     Royal Australian Air Force 103 Squadron   from Boonah, Ipswich, Queenstown)

(d.6th June 1944)

Leonard Zingleman flew with 103 squadron. The plane he flew in was shot down near Vire in France on 6th June 1944 after taking off from Elsham at 10 pm on D Day. The French memorial association, ASNA, have recently erected a plaque to the crew and the plane at the crash site. Would you happen to have any more details of Leonard? I know he came from Ipswich Queensland but if you have anything else could you please forward to me.

Sgt. Zizole .     Rhodesian African Rifles (d.4th June 1944)

Sgt. Zizole is commemorated on the Lubudi Memorial in the Congo.

Bruno Zlatich .       from Italy)

Ny father, Bruno Zlatich, was an Italian POW during WWII somewhere in England. He had his own workshop (electrical) and made "gadgets".

S/Sgt. John Znavor .     United States Army 2nd Btn, F Coy. 414th Infantry Rgt

`Jack' Zvanor was in the 414th, 2nd Btn, Company F and served from 1943 to 1945. Anyone remember him?

S/Sgt. Wilbur Hugo Zoller .     United States Army   from USA)

My grandfather, American Army Staff Sergeant Wilbur Hugo Zoller, was also held at Stalag IVb from 1944 to May of '45. Unfortunately, my grandpa passed away when I was only 4 years old. As I understand from my grandmother, he did not talk much about his time at war.

2nd Lt. Joseph P. Zutell .     United States Army 354th Inf. M Coy 89th Div.

The following is a copy of the Certificate from the Czech Army:

"The Commandant of Czechoslovakian Army in Susice wishes to [illegible] his gratitude to the following [illegible] of the American and British Armies:

  • Joseph P Zutell, 2nd Lt, 05_7515, Company M, 354th Inf, 89th Div
  • Fred H. Jasper, S/Sgt, 37448400, Company M, 354th Inf, 89th Div
  • Leonard E. C__plin, Acting Sergeant, 2572226 Royal Corps of Signals, English
  • Worn E. Drew, PFC, 36067232, Company M, 354th Inf, 89th Div
  • Arlen Ingram, PFC, 38608593, Company M, 354th Inf, 89th Div
  • Byron S. Mooney, Pvt, 11131658, Company M, 354th Inf, 89th Div

    The above mentioned escaped from their Prisoner of War camp in Mokrosuky in the district of Susice on the night of 4 to 5 May 1945, and joined up with the Czech soldiers in Susice. On the following day, they disarmed the German garrison in the town, numbering 63 men. Then, accompanied by a Czech Army officer and members of the Czech National Freedom movement, set out for the tanks of the 4th Division of the 3rd American Army in order to connect up with them. After a journey through areas still partially occupied by the enemy, they reached the spearheads some 20 km away, and gave information about the strength of the enemy craft in the neighborhood and brought the tanks into Susice.

    The area Commandant of the Czechoslovakian Army in Susice Susice, May 10, 1945".

  • F/O Ryszard Zygmuntowicz .     Royal Air Force 138 Sqdn.   from Poland)

    (d.21st April 1942)

    I'm looking for any information about my grandfather's brother, Ryszard Zygmuntowicz. He was a pilot and he died on 21st April 1942 in Kreuth (Austria).

    It is interesting that in official documents and information he died during his flight to Czechoslovakia. There are questions about why the plane crashed in Austria, why two members of a plane crew were buried in as "unknown people", why people from Kreuth found a lot of money and communist leaflets in the place of the accident and - last question - why, on a night of bad weather, when all flights were cancelled, the plane took off with Wing Commander Farley (English commander of a Squadron) which was an unexpected event? It's impossible to get any information from any authority and as far as I know, until 2020 year this evidence is secret. I'd like to find someone who knows something about this Squadron. Maybe pilots or their children who have memories from World War II.

    Update: The crew were:

  • Wing Co W.R. Farley DFC, RAF (2nd pilot)
  • F/O J.A. Pulton, RAFVR (airgunner)
  • F/O R. Zygmuntowicz, PAF (pilot)
  • Sgt C. Madracki, PAF (navigator)
  • F/Sgt B Karbowski, PAF (rear gunner)
  • Capt. A.H. Voellnagel, RAF
  • Sgt L. Wilmanski, PAF (airbomber)
  • Sgt M. Wojciechowski, PAF (wop/airgunner)

    All the crew were buried in Durnbach War Cemetery, Collective Grave 9.H.20-24 (information from CWGC). It is suggested that there may have been four passengers aboard as well as the crew. 138 Squadron flew Special Operations duties, so the passengers may have been agents.

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