1st Bn The King's Regiment, (Liverpool), Chindits.

Discussion in 'Burma & India' started by High Wood, Mar 28, 2016.

  1. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Cheers for that. Devanney is certainly an oddity in that he clearly enlisted into the King's Regiment and the Dekho! notice makes it quite clear that he was 1/King's. I wasn't aware that he was on the first Chindit expedition, and indeed he may have been at Mogaung during Operation Thursday. He does not appear to have been wounded so he is not mentioned in the casualty lists. I wonder if he transferred to the 1st battalion after the 13th was disbanded.

    With regard to the late lamented buffalo, I do wonder why they went to so much trouble to skin it, as I imagine it would have made very good crackling. Obtaining some horseradish sauce may have been a problem.
  2. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    The newspaper articles on my story page suggest that Devanney was on Longcloth, but I'm not 100% sure about that HW. Halton definitely was, but the connection with the two is really only that they both come from St. Helens. As you say, an oddity.
  3. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    The Dekho! notice of his passing is quite clear about which regiment he belonged to. I could understand the confusion if he had been a member of the King's Own Royal Regiment, as some people confuse The King's Own with the King's Regiment. but the Lancashire Fusiliers aren't even close, except of course geographically.

    Devanney Dekho! 003.JPG

    With regard to the newspaper accounts, the small article that you have on your website is from a Glasgow newspaper and is a summary of the main Liverpool Daily Post article. The fuller article seems to be a mixture of Devanney telling tall tales or the reporter either misunderstanding or exaggerating what Devanney said, particularly with regard to being "dropped repeatedly in the jungle on special work".
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2020
  4. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Sergeant William Rowson (33), of the King's Regiment (Liverpool), of West Derby Road, Liverpool, died of wounds in an Indian theatre of war. He was an old boy of Emanuel School, Mill Road, Everton.

    Liverpool Evening Express. 26th May 1944.

    Mrs. J. Rowson, of 12 Phoebe Ann Street, Liverpool, has been informed that her husband, William George Edmund Rowson, has died of wounds received in the Indian theatre of war.
    Sgt Rowson, aged 33, was in the King's Liverpool T.A. before the war and later transferred.

    The Liverpool Echo. 16th June 1944.

    More King's 002.JPG

    Sgt. William George Edmund Rowson. 1st battalion, Cameronians (Scottish Rifles). Died 29th April, 1944. Buried in the Ranchi War Cemetery, India.

    It would be interesting to know when he transferred from the King's to the Cameronians. Did he take part in the retreat from Burma in 1942?
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2020
  5. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Another King's Regiment officer killed in action in Burma whilst attached to another regiment.

    242727. Lieutenant Daniel Bernard Gerald Coakley, King's Liverpool Regiment, attached 1st battalion Somerset Light Infantry. Killed in action 26th January, 1945, aged 22.

    More King's 008.JPG
  6. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    11422553 Gunner Henry James Leonard. 118 L.A.A. Regiment, Royal Artillery. Flew into Burma 5th March 1944, Glider P.22. Reported Missing 6th March 1944. Captured by the Japanese 19th March 1944. Prisoner of War Rangoon Gaol.

    Royal Artillery Tracer Card.

    Henry James Leonard.jpg

    Henry James Leonard rev.jpg

    Prisoner of War index card.

    Last edited: Jan 6, 2021
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  7. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    5192574 Gunner Arthur Dyson. 118 L.A.A. Regiment, Royal Artillery, previously enlisted into the Gloucestershire Regiment. Flew into Burma 5th March 1944. Glider P22. Captured 19th March 1944. Prisoner of War Rangoon Gaol.

    Royal Artillery Tracer Card.

    Arthur Dyson.jpg

    Arthur Dyson rev.jpg
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  8. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    5570092 Gunner Cyril Kenneth Perks. Royal Artillery, previously enlisted in the Gloucestershire Regiment. Flew into Burma, 5th March 1944, Glider P22, reported missing 6th March 1944. Captured by the Japanese 19th March 1944. Prisoner of War Rangoon Gaol.

    The Royal Artillery Tracer Card gives few details.


    The Prisoner of War Index Card gives more detail.

    Perks (2).JPG
  9. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Here is one of those names that shows up the pitfalls of the various research documents in the public domain. In this case the Defence Medal Roll in the 1/King's War Diary. Under "C" Coy is listed 1811189 L/Cpl Smith. H.R. I had presumed that the Defence Medal Rolls listed those men who had served with the 1st battalion during Operation Thursday and who were still serving in 1945.

    The Royal Artillery attestation books states that he was posted to the King's Regiment on the 12th November 1944 and this is confirmed by his Royal Artillery Tracer Card.

    It begs the question, how many of the other men on the Defence Medal Rolls did not take part on Operation Thursday?

    Henry Robert Smith.jpg
  10. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    A similar candidate this time from the "A" Coy Defence Medal Roll.

    Royal Artillery. 1526643 Pte. Frederick Stothard. His Tracer Card shows that he was posted to the Border Regiment on the 17th November 1943. The date of his posting to the 1/King's Regiment is not recorded.

    Frederick Stothard.jpg
  11. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Another probable candidate for the database, taken from the Rochdale Observer 29th September 1945.

    First class Stoker Harold Simpson, younger son of Mr and Mrs Leonard Simpson, 99 Cutgate Road, Rochdale has been awarded the Distinguished Service Medal "for gallantry and devotion to duty in operations which lead to the clearance of the Aegean, and the relief of Greece".
    Stoker Simpson, who is 23 years of age, joined the Navy four years ago, having previously been green keeper on the Rochdale Golf Club course at Bagslate.
    His elder brother is serving with the King's Liverpool Regiment in Burma and his father is an old regular soldier, having had fourteen years service with the King's Own Scottish Borderers before he lost a leg in the last war*

    The 1939 Register shows that four people were living at 99 Cutgate Street, Rochdale in 1939.

    Leonard Simpson, born 22nd July 1886 and his wife, Mary E A Simpson, born 16th November 1993. The other two names are redacted having been "Officially Closed".

    However, a quick search of the FreeBMD database shows that Leonard Simpson married Mary E A Wood in Rochdale in 1917, and that they had two sons, Alfred, born 1920 and Harold, born 1922, both in Rochdale.

    Alfred Simpson does not appear in the casualty lists, the Defence Medal Rolls, or the list of those who transferred from the 13th King's to the 1st King's in November 1945. He does not appear to have joined the Burma Star Association either.

    If anyone knows anything about the military service of Alfred Simpson, King's Regiment, I would be grateful for any information.

    *9277 Pte. Leonard Simpson, 1/King's Own Scottish Borderers.

    Leonard Simpson.jpg
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2021
  12. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Picked up Grenade.

    Sergeant John Joseph McQuillen, King’s Regiment, younger son of Mr and Mrs William McQuillen of 1, Park Vale Road, Liverpool 9, has been awarded the M.M. for distinguished service in the 14th Army area.

    The citation states: “On May 24th, and for the following 24 hours Sgt. McQuillen was sergeant of a platoon holding an exposed position under continual enemy shelling, mortar and machine gun fire and surrounded by a large Jap force.

    “An enemy grenade landed in the area. Sergeant McQuillen picked up the grenade and attempted to throw it clear of our troops. The grenade exploded and seriously wounded this N.C.O. For the remainder of the 24 hours Sergeant McQuillen continued to do great work as platoon sergeant, and when the remainder of the platoon finally broke through the enemy ring, Sgt McQuillen rendered invaluable assistance helping a wounded man.”

    Aged 25, Sergeant McQuillen is an old boy of St Francis de Sale’s School, Walton, and before the war he was employed by the Dunlop Rubber Co., Rice Lane, Walton.

    Liverpool Echo 15th December 1944.

    Mcquillen 002.JPG

    Blackpool cas.png

    Sgt. John Joseph's McQuillen's casualty List entry
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021
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  13. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Here is JJ. McQuillen's MM recommendation:

    McQuillen MM.jpg
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  14. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Thank you for uploading the citation, which was recommended by Major John Masters no less.
  15. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Pte. John Thomas Smith, of the King’s Regiment, whose wife lives at 14, Barracks Road, was reported missing in Burma on March 6th 1944. Mrs Smith has now been informed that there is little possibility of his still being alive and he must be presumed killed. Prior to joining the Forces in 1939, he was employed by Messrs. Mather of Hapton.

    Burnley Express. 22nd December 1945.

    Smith & Co 002.JPG

    3388112 Pte. John Thomas Smith. 1/King’s Regiment (Liverpool), previously served with the East Lancashire Regiment. Killed in action 5th March 1944, Glider 21P. No known grave, commemorated on the Rangoon Memorial.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
  16. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Spotted “Nelson” on Gift Parcel and traced fellow townsman to Indian Rest Camp.

    Smith & Co 007.JPG

    Here is a photograph of two Nelson men, Pte Cyril Woodhouse and Sapper Neil Price, which was taken at Mussoorie, India. On July 19th to mark the reunion of these former chums under somewhat unusual circumstances. Describing the incident, Sapper Price writes: “It is fourteen years since I, along with my parents, removed to Morecombe, and although I was born in New Zealand, I still claim to be a Nelsonian, having done my apprenticeship in Nelson. Whenever I have met anyone from the town, or read anything that had any connection with Nelson, it has always been of great interest to me.

    “Shortly after landing in Terciera, Azores, in 1943, I met a Leading Aircraftman from Smith Street, Nelson. The next Nelsonian I met was Sig. Drake, a plumber, previously employed by the Corporation. We sailed on the same ship to India. Whilst in Calcutta, I met Sergeant C. Nutter, of Every Street. As boys we had both played in the Nelson Salvation Army junior and senior bands; now we found ourselves playing in the Salvation Army Serviceman’s Band in Calcutta.

    The most unique of my experiences, however, happened a few days ago. I was given twenty-one day’s leave, to be spent at Mussoorie, a remote hill station 6,500 feet above sea level in the Himalayas. The day after my arrival I went to see a few of the shops, and at one of them I noticed several gift parcels being assembled for the United Kingdom, complete with name and address in each case. I noticed “Nelson” on one, and looking closer, I recognised the name of Private Cyril Moorhouse. The following day I located him and found that he was on leave too, and billeted in another part of the camp.

    “It was fourteen years since last we had met, and on seeing him I was not sure that he was the right person, but he recognised my voice, and soon we were reminiscing with the Nelson district being the main theme.

    Cyril, now serving with the King’s Regiment, was with Wingate’s Chindits in Burma, and at one time dropped 200 miles inside Jap territory, experiencing thrilling escapades and sights in the jungle. Cyril and my brother Victor, were classmates at Bradshaw Street Council School, and both played in the Salvation Army Junior Band.

    Victor, now a Captain in the R.A.O.C. has recently been awarded the M.B.E. for meritorious service in Italy.”

    Nelson Leader. 17th August 1945.

    Pte. Cyril Moorhouse does not appear in the 1/King's Defence Medal Rolls or amongst those men of the 13th King's Regiment who are listed as having been transferred to the 1st King's in November 1944.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
  17. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    “The King’s” Part in Burma Success.

    Headquarters S.E.A.C.

    A Company of the King’s Regiment (Liverpool) played a prominent part in the taking of Mogaung during the recent Chindit operations in Burma. Their story can now be told writes an officer observer.

    The Company was detached from the rest of the battalion, which was taking part in operations - the main attack on the vital town. It was commanded by Major G.A. Morrow,* a Londonderry man, who had volunteered for Chindit work and had been flown direct into Burma.

    With him at Mogaung, he had Captain Frederick Freeman,** whose home is at Beechville, Grassendale Park, Liverpool.

    The Company, which was detached from the battalion for this vital job, consisted of two platoons. They were very old friends of the Lancashire Fusiliers. Their main task was the taking of a village on the outskirts of the strongly held Japanese bastion. The fierceness with which they fought and the value of their effort is reflected in a message in the handwriting of Brigadier (“Mad Mike”) Calvert, the famous Chindit leader. He sent congratulations and thanks for the very gallant work of those two platoons.

    Sergeant William Boon, a Manchester cotton weaver received an immediate award of the Military Medal for his bravery in leading a bayonet charge on the village.

    The action served to cement even more strongly than before the friendship between the Lancashire Fusiliers and the King’s Regiment.

    When the Fusiliers posed for a picture after the action, they insisted that those members of the King’s Regiment, who had taken part in the action, should be included.

    The Liverpool Echo. 13th December 1944.

    *274982 Major George Alexander Morrow. M.M. 1/King’s Regt.

    **180079 Captain Frederick Clement Freeman, No 10 Platoon, “C” Company, 82 Column. 1/King’s Regt.
  18. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Here is Morrow's MM, originally to be the DCM, for his efforts against the Italians in East Africa. Might well be a Wingate connection here, who was also in the region at this time:

    Morrow GA. MM.jpg
  19. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Cheers, B43, much appreciated.
  20. High Wood

    High Wood Well-Known Member

    Local Casualties.
    Lance-Corporal Hector Fazackerley of the 9th battalion, King's Regiment, son of Mr W. Fazackerley, of 371, Longmore Lane, Fazackerley, Liverpool, who was previously reported missing with the Chindits in Burma, has now been presumed Killed in Action on May 25th, 1944.
    Formerly a pupil of Barlow's Lane School, Fazackerley was employed as a warehouse man with Peak Freans the biscuit manufacturers before the war.

    The Liverpool Echo 14th June 1946.

    More King's 005.JPG

    "We were concerned in an action at a place we called "Blackpool" which was about three miles west of the road leading from Mogaung to Katha and about 60 miles north of Katha.

    About a Brigade of the Chindit force had a block at this place. The Japs attacked in force and eventually we were forced to evacuate this place. The last time I saw the already mentioned personnel was on the night of the 25th May 1944. My platoon was in a position outside the main block and we got cut off and surrounded from the main force. We fought most of the night until ammunition got low then lay quiet. When day light came and we started to fight our way out, these men were missing:

    3772943 P/L/Cpl Fazackerley. H., was about 6 Ft., dark, had a moustache, and came from Fazackerley, Liverpool."

    Statement by 172228 Lieut. William Norman. Hanson. 29th August 1945.

    “On the 23rd May 1944 at approximately 0630 hours my platoon were going up a ridge at “Blackpool” when the enemy opened fire with mortars and hit the centre of the platoon. The platoon were proceeding in single file at the time. Ptes Ree and Foster cried out that they had been hit, in the back and feet respectively. I was ordered to carry on up the track and so continued. Ptes Ree and Foster were unable to carry on and were left where they had been hit. That was the last that I saw of them.

    When we eventually reached the ridge, I checked the platoon and found that Ptes Bellamy, Cogley, Reynolds, McCann and L/Cpl Fazackerley were also missing. What happened to them I do not know. I have not seen or heard of them since.

    The path up to the ridge was under mortar fire the whole time and three enemy snipers were at the top of the ridge while we were climbing”

    3774949 Sgt J.J. McQuillen. Clement Town. 19th September 1944.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2021

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