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1st Airborne Reconnaissance Squadron


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#1 South

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 07:10 PM

Firstly, apologies if this is in the wrong place, I wasn't entirely sure where it was best suited.

I just wondered whether any body may know where the first photo on this link originates from:

JUST ORDINARY MEN. HQ Troop, 1st Airborne Reconnaissance Squadron, 1st British Airborne Division (WW2) - Reconnaissance Sqn

My Grandad is in it, and I would love to be able to get a proper copy. I have tried to contact the people who run the site a few times but never had any reply.

Possibly nobody knows, but I thought it was worth asking on here :)
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#2 Cee

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 07:21 PM

South,

The group photo is titled "Reccetroop Saunton Sands North Devon". It is not the clearest image and I'm sorry I don't know the original source. Where is your Grandad located in the photo?

Cheers ...

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#3 South

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 07:26 PM

Thanks, just the title is more than I knew already!

My Grandad is middle row, 7th from the right. This is one of the only other photos I have of him in uniform (sorry it's come up rather large and I don't know how to shrink it on here!)

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#4 Cee

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 08:06 PM

South,

An excellent picture of your Grandad - thanks for sharing. Paul Pariso who is on a mission to put names to faces in 1st Airborne pics hopefully has a few clues. There's an interesting photo of the 1st Airborne Recce Squadron hanging on the wall of All Saints Church, Ruskington that may be of interest as well. Not a good copy but at least we know it's location. I won't add it here as I'm not sure of the copyright on that.

You can see it in this collection on Panoramio

Photos by paul3965 - Panoramio

Is that your collection Paul? ... :confused:

Do you know what troop your Grandad was in? I ask because I think Paul in his Paratrooper ID thread was trying to run those pics down as well.

Gotta run to see me old Maw ... Later
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#5 South

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Posted 04 November 2012 - 08:20 PM

Thank you, very interesting collection of photographs. I believe my Uncle may have visited that church at some point in the past. I don't know what troop he was in unfortunately. I am going to ask my Uncle and Aunts if we can send off for his service records. I know very, very little about his time in the military.

He died when I was almost 4. I have very vague memories, my one vivid memory is the sound of his very strong Northern Irish accent!
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#6 Cee

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 03:43 AM

South,

Just saw your introduction thread and the information you provided on your Grandad, William (Bill) Kelly. wtid45 has already checked out the Troop photos in Remember Arnhem. I do have A, C, D, HQ, and Officers group shots that I could send if you wish to look at them more closely. There's probably no point in posting them here if he is not present there. They were posted up in a WW2Talk thread which I can't locate at this time.

Regards ...
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#7 Paul Pariso

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 09:16 PM

Is that your collection Paul? ... :confused:


Yes mate, it is. I can find no trace of William Kelly in any of the Recce books/docs I have I'm afraid :(.

Another angle of attack may be his birth place? The book "Brotherhood of the Cauldron" by David Truesdale is all about Irishmen who fought with 1st Airborne Division.

All the best.......... :)
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#8 South

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 12:04 PM

I do have A, C, D, HQ, and Officers group shots that I could send if you wish to look at them more closely.


Thank you again for sending the photos to me, I have found out today that he was in A Troop. My Aunt and I are in disagreement as to which man he may be in the A Troop photograph you sent!


Yes mate, it is. I can find no trace of William Kelly in any of the Recce books/docs I have I'm afraid :(.

Another angle of attack may be his birth place? The book "Brotherhood of the Cauldron" by David Truesdale is all about Irishmen who fought with 1st Airborne Division.

All the best.......... :)


He didn't jump at Arnhem, I'm not sure whether that may be why he isn't mentioned in any books. He was born in Pettigoe, Co. Donegal, but had moved to Irvinestown, Enniskillen where he lived until he joined the Army.

I shall have to do some more digging, getting hold of his service records will be my priority I think.
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#9 Paul Pariso

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 05:11 PM

Hi South,

Do you happen to know when your Grandad joined the Recce Squadron?

All the best............ :)
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:poppy: "What manner of men are these that wear the red beret.......They are in fact men apart, every man an Emperor" :poppy:

#10 South

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 05:35 PM

Hi South,

Do you happen to know when your Grandad joined the Recce Squadron?

All the best............ :)


Unfortunately I have absolutely no idea, but apparently my Uncle has his pay book, I'm hoping to go over and get some scanned copies of it, perhaps that will give me an idea? I've never seen a pay book before so not entirely sure what would be in it, but I assume it would give me at least a few more details than I already know...well I hope!!
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#11 Paul Pariso

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 01:12 PM

I've had a look through "Brotherhood of the Cauldron" but no trace I'm afraid :(
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#12 horsapassenger

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 01:17 PM

I've had a look through "Brotherhood of the Cauldron" but no trace I'm afraid :(


Paul

According to message 8 he didn't go to Arnhem so wouldn't be in the book in any case

John
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#13 Paul Pariso

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Posted 08 November 2012 - 07:50 PM

Paul

According to message 8 he didn't go to Arnhem so wouldn't be in the book in any case

John


I beg to differ John.
If you have a look at your copy, you will see that Appendix 1 on page 185 is headed "Roll of Irishmen who served in or with the 1st Airborne Division 1942-45". Indeed, the full title of the book is "Brotherhood of the Cauldron: Irishmen in the 1st Airborne Division from North Africa to Arnhem". We know that Kelly served with the Recce Squadron prior to Arnhem so there was a chance he could have been mentioned in the book somewhere. Alas he isn't.

All the best............:)

Edited by Paul Pariso, 08 November 2012 - 08:00 PM.

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#14 horsapassenger

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 08:12 AM

Paul

Once again I stand corrected

John
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#15 Paul Pariso

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 11:25 AM

Paul

Once again I stand corrected

John


:lol: Don't worry mate, it's a rare thing for me to be right and you wrong! :lol:

All the best........ :)
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#16 Cee

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 03:00 PM

Guys,

Any ideas on the Reconnaissance Squadron's connection to Saunton Sands and a possible date for the photo. I assume it was training related - driving vehicles in a sandy terrain? Information I suspect that is buried in a WD. The best I can find are a few interesting YouTube videos of the Americans carrying out exercises on the area's beaches in preparation for the D-Day landings.

Regards ...
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#17 matchbox

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 03:51 PM

in the photograph, despite having no " wings up ", might be worthwhile checking the parachute course database. I have a copy of a photograph of a Recce lad taken just prior to going to Ringway at the beginning of August 1944, sans wings. he successfully passed the regime and jumped at Arnhem.
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#18 South

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 10:11 PM

My Dad seems to think he was medically discharged at some point...he has no idea when he joined up or when he was medically discharged, or if infact he definitely was.

I think I need to get hold of that pay book to give me some clues!
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#19 Paul Pariso

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Posted 10 November 2012 - 10:18 AM

My Dad seems to think he was medically discharged at some point...he has no idea when he joined up or when he was medically discharged, or if infact he definitely was.

I think I need to get hold of that pay book to give me some clues!


Hi south,

Forgive me if you've been asked this before but have you or your Dad applied for your Grandad's service records via the MOD?

All the best........... :)
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:poppy: "What manner of men are these that wear the red beret.......They are in fact men apart, every man an Emperor" :poppy:

#20 South

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Posted 11 November 2012 - 05:29 PM

Not yet - I'm working on it. This Grandad was actually my Mum's Dad. My Mum died a fair few years ago now so I need to ask an Aunt/Uncle (there are many of them as he had 9 children) whether they will sign the forms for me as next of kin.

I also need to track down who has his death certificate. I'm going to work on that one more when I'm back from my holiday - fingers crossed I can get the forms sent off asap!
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#21 Paul Pariso

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Posted 12 November 2012 - 06:44 PM

Not yet - I'm working on it. This Grandad was actually my Mum's Dad. My Mum died a fair few years ago now so I need to ask an Aunt/Uncle (there are many of them as he had 9 children) whether they will sign the forms for me as next of kin.

I also need to track down who has his death certificate. I'm going to work on that one more when I'm back from my holiday - fingers crossed I can get the forms sent off asap!


OK South, I hope you find what you're looking for.

All the best............... :)
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:poppy: "What manner of men are these that wear the red beret.......They are in fact men apart, every man an Emperor" :poppy:

#22 South

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 09:18 PM

Well - my Uncle received my Grandad's service records a few days ago. I am seeing him tomorrow so hoping to find out more then, but from what I gather so far he joined in 1942 and left in 1946 and what happened in between - I'm not sure yet.


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#23 South

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 03:54 PM

I went over to see my Grandad's records today, with a view to scanning them in, but they are A3 so that will have to wait. I started making notes on them, then thought it would be easier to just take photos. But, like the fool that I am, I've managed to delete them by mistake, so now I'm back home an hour away with just a few notes! I do irritate myself some times!!

 

Anyway, I have some more details from the basic notes that I wrote. The writing was very difficult to read, hopefully I've got most of it right.

 

My Grandad signed up to the Royal Ulster Rifles and then transferred to Recce, ending up in 1st Airlanding Recce Sqn.

 

He signed up on 15 May 1940. His Army number was 7016894. On 8th January 1941 he was posted to 31 Inf Bde (writing on that wasn't very clear but I think that's what it says).

 

On 22nd Jan 1941 he transferred to Recce. He did an SWB course(??) at Brecon on 30 June 1941 (this may have read as a course at SWB Brecon, not easy to read the writing). Then an MG (Machine Gun??) course at S Command in June 1942 and something at Netheravon that year too (writing really bad on this bit).

 

13 January 1943 he was downgraded to medical category B2. He was then transferred back to the Royal Ulster Rifles in March 1943 and spent 21 days in a military hospital in Belfast (the hospital name begins with an S but the rest I couldn't read).

 

He was released to the reserve on 3rd March 1946 with exemplary conduct.

 

I could kick myself for deleting the photos as there were pages and pages of it!


Edited by South, 28 May 2013 - 03:58 PM.

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#24 airborne medic

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 05:33 PM

For info the 1st A/L Brigade was 'created' from the 31st Infantry Brigade...my theory is as jeep, anti-tank guns etc could not in those days be dropped by parachute it was realised gliders would be needed in an 'airborne division' and so as the 31st Brigade was trained in 'mountain warfare' I feel a staff wallah felt they would be used to 'breaking items down ' into man packable loads.....this all happened in 1941....

SWB could be South Wales Borderers as their depot used to be at Brecon. MG is machine gun and S Command would be Southern Command....His time in the airborne was limited I see and his records should show overseas service but did he leave the Recce Sqn before they went to NA.....perhaps someone has access to the WD to confirm date of departure.....I can't recall them being in the Sicily op but they were definitely in Italy from Sept 43.....Hope this helps in some small way....


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#25 South

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 05:46 PM

Thank you very much! Very helpful indeed, and very interesting to hear that they were formed from 31st Inf Bde. I had wondered why he transferred so soon after getting there, now I know! :)


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#26 airborne medic

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 01:46 PM

Happy to help....the 31st was I think based in Wales around the time of their 'transfer'.....but then went to Salisbury Plain area


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