John St. George Gunston, Irish Guards & 2SAS, Operation Maple

Discussion in 'The Brigade of Guards' started by dbf, Jul 13, 2009.

  1. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Hoping that someone will have a few suggestions as to how to investigate further or if let me know if there are any refs specifically to this operation or this man, in archives or publications.

    A Memoriam notice in The Times, Nov 10, 1945 reads as follows:

    GUNSTON. - Previously reported missing in Italy, March, 1944, now believed to have been shot by the Germans after capture, CAPTAIN JOHN ST. GEORGE GUNSTON, Irish Guards, attached 2nd S.A.S. Regiment, elder son of Sir Derrick and Lady Gunston, Petty France, Badminton, Glos.
    "Quis separabit?"

    CWGC :: Casualty Details
    Captain JOHN ST. GEORGE GUNSTON 124477, Irish Guards and, Special Air Service Regiment, A.A.C. who died on 07 March 1944
Remembered with honour CASSINO MEMORIAL
    :poppy:

    Special forces site lists him as follows:
    John St George Gunston - SAS - Special Forces - Roll Of Honour

    Regards,
    D
     

    Attached Files:

  2. ADM199

    ADM199 Well-Known Member

    Diane,
    again Kew has the answer.

    WO106/3959 Operation Maple and Baobab

    WO218/183 Report : Operation Maple


    Brian
     
    dbf likes this.
  3. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Brian,
    As ever much obliged.
    Regards,
    D
     
  4. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Belatedly updating this thread, thanks yet again go to Brian.

    MAPLE DRIFTWOOD

    Parties 5 and 6 were dropped on a Drop Zone 8 miles West North West of IOSI, on the 7 January, 1944. A Rendezvous was fixed at 5 miles South West of FERMO, near TORRE DI PALME, for the night 25/26 January for evacuation by sea. The parties did not arrive. Thereafter there is only news at second-hand.

    Pct. COOK, 2nd S.A.S., while escaping, met Captain GUNSTON near FERMO at the beginning of February 1944. Captain GUNSTON told COOK that he still had a further task to complete and then would evacuate his party by sea.

    The following is an extract from a report by Captain MATTHEWS, 2 Div. Signals Company S.A.C.S.:-

    "On 4 February 1944 in FERMO I met a girl named Adia who helped Prisoner of War at the hospital in that town. She told me that a parachutist and some others were leaving that night by sea. Her cousin guided me to the Rendezvous where I met Captain GUNSTON. The latter said that he was leaving by sea for the Allied lines with 8 parachutists and Captain CLUBB, New Zealand Expeditionary Force, and one other man.

    On 7 March Captain GUNSTON's party left by boat from a point a little South of PORTO SAN GIORGIO, in a 22 foot boat. I never heard of their safe arrival and no message was subsequently received from them."

    (Admiralty weather report for the Adriatic coastline 7 March 1944 was wind strength 5 - 6 easterly veering south-west, moderating towards midday.)

    There seems little reason to doubt the above extract. Captain GUNSTON's party may either have attacked by Allied aircraft (who were instructed to fire on craft off the enemy coast) or have been capsized some distance from the shore.

    There is also the possibility that they were forced to land again in enemy occupied territory. In this connection it is noteworthy that a German intelligence officer read out the names of Captain GUNSTON, Sergeant BENSON, and Pct. LOOSEMORE, as S.A.S. captured in ITALY when interrogating three S.A.S. prisoners in January, 1944.
    :poppy: Cassino MEMORIAL & war cemetery, ITALY
     
  5. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

  6. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Western Daily Press 25 May 1945

    GUNSTON John St. George, IG & 2SAS, Western Daily Press 25 May 1945.png
     
  7. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    Western Daily Presss 10 November 1945
    GUNSTON John St. George, IG & 2 SAS, Western Daily Presss 10 November 1945.png
     
    4jonboy likes this.

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