Story of sapper Richard Dyke

Discussion in 'Airborne' started by PRADELLES, Apr 16, 2018 at 9:44 PM.

  1. PRADELLES

    PRADELLES Well-Known Member

    Hi all,

    Below, the story of sapper Dyke :
    Thank you to his son Howard Dyke.

    "He was born in a small village called Stoke Bruerne which is about 10 miles south of where I live in Northampton.

    He did his basic training at Quebec Barracks Wooton which is a village south east of Northampton. These barracks were still open and being used when I was young but they have now been built on so there is no trace of them left.

    His list says he then went to the Royal Engineers training camp in Logmoor near Liss and then for further training at Cairn Ryan camp near Stranrair with the 201 field company RE.

    There is another note saying Bordon 50th RHU, not sure what that means.

    Then he did training which I am pretty sure was in the Horsa glider at West Grinstead with 3rd Div RE Assault.

    He then did more training in Inverary with the 3rd Div RE where its says he joined 249 Field Company where he trained with the 6th Airborne traing with the Horsa Gliders.

    From there he was sent to Tarrant Rushton to be attached to 2nd Battalion Ox and Bucks.

    They were sealed in the camp there three weeks before the invasion.

    I remember him telling me that he and his friend went to a church service on the 4th June expecting to go that night in the 5th but as we know they did not leave until the night of the 5th to land at Pegasus just after midnight.

    He told me very little of what happened at the bridge. His job was to clear the explosives that were put on the bridge to blow it up but he said they were never there in the cradles that were put there for the job. He told me they cleared mines during the morning in between getting shot at from snipers just down the canal a few hundred yards away.

    He remembers meeting a young girl who was the daughter of the owners of the Cafe at the bridge and the family still owns the café. We meet the lady who was the girl in 2006 and she is now the patron of the Pegasus raids who attacked the bridge that night.

    He told me that some wine was found from somewhere and they were allowed to have a drink.

    He told me he left the bridge on 7th June and in July was attached to 51st Highland Div but I never thought to ask if it was still with the 249 Field.

    He did watch the massive air assault on Caen in July when the allies Unfortunalty destroyed Caen.

    He told me he travelled through Caen just after.

    There is a list of places I think he visited in this order.

    Caen
    Rouen
    Dieppe
    Lille ( I know he built a bridge here )
    Arras
    Brussels
    Burgh
    Antwerp ( Christmas day Boxing Day 1944 )

    This was during Battle of the Bulge where he was sent to the River Muse to blow up a bridge

    Its was very difficult to get any detailed information from him as I am sure you know they saw things no one should ever see. I know he had nightmares often so I never pushed him too much because of this.

    I know after Normandy he was sent back to Britain as he was one of the youngest at 19 to begin training for the invasion of Japan which thankfully never happening as I would probably not be here writing this email!

    They did complete the training at Troon golf course and travelled down to Liverpool to embark to the USA before going to Japan but hours before the ship left it was all called off as the Bomb was dropped and Japan surrendered>

    He went back up to Edinburgh for guard duty at the castle until the war was officially over and this is when he returned home.

    He finished his service in Port Said dumping unused ordinance with German Prisoners until March 1947 when he was demobbed."
     
    Cee and CL1 like this.
  2. PRADELLES

    PRADELLES Well-Known Member

    Sapper Dyke fought in the 249th RE on June 6th, 1944.
    But his training before Dday and the cities he crossed after Dday aren't the same as the 249th RE.
    His son and me, research to understand his carrer.
    Regards,
    Xavier P.
     
  3. PRADELLES

    PRADELLES Well-Known Member

    Two pictures of Sapper Richard Dyke.
    On the picture 2, he was with his brother.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 17, 2018 at 9:01 AM
  4. Cee

    Cee Senior Member Patron

    Xavier,

    Very nice photos of Sapper Richard Dyke. If he doesn't have them Howard needs to apply for his father's service records. They would help in determining his actual postings. As you know Sapper Dyke doesn't turn up on the Coup de Main nominal roll. He may have been with the remains of 2 Platoon 249 Field Company RE that came in by glider during Operation Tonga.

    Regards ...
     
  5. PRADELLES

    PRADELLES Well-Known Member

    Thank you Cee.
    Where could we found his father's service records ?
    About the glider he took to land in Normandy, his son is sure sapper Dyke was in the first six gliders. I agree, it's strange.
    Regards,
    Xavier
     
  6. CL1

    CL1 116th LAA and 92nd (Loyals) LAA,Royal Artillery Patron

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