17 June 1940 1 Armd. Div. Workshops Royal Army Ordnance Corps

Discussion in '1940' started by noggin1969, May 26, 2020.

  1. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    Lance Serjeant SWINN, GEORGE HENRY
    Service Number 4968434

    Died 17/06/1940

    Aged 35

    1 Armd. Div. Workshops
    Royal Army Ordnance Corps


    Long shot I know for details of the day. Reported killed by machine gun fire on the deck of a ship. Take it this was by aircraft , not listed as on the Lancastria. Buried Brest Kerfautras Cemetery.
  2. gmyles

    gmyles Senior Member


    Cas Lists 1939-1945 on FMP just confirms RAOC and death date.

    From what I have read, if he was killed on board a ship he would have been 'buried at sea' and commemorated on a memorial somewhere. If he died on a ship and his body wasn't found until the ships arrival back in UK, I would have expected him to end to be buried in a UK cemetery (eg Dover).

    If he had ended up overboard and his body washed up ashore, he would have then been buried in a nearby grave and moved to an official graveside later. But the graves registration on CWGC says he went straight into Brest Kerfautras Cemetery.

    So the story above doesn't seem to fit any scenario that I can think of.

    My father, a RAOC driver, was evacuated with the BEF on 29th May 1940 was one of the lucky ones.

    By coincidence, he was transferred into 1 Armd. Div. Workshops in 1941 and sent to N Africa.

    Sorry I cant be of any more help.

  3. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    Only a line in the local paper to go on. Wasn't sure if any of the ships had been strafed in the harbour. With the dead taken off to make way for the living. I have the names of a few of the ships at Brest on the day but nothing listed as happening in the docks.
    Last edited: May 27, 2020
  4. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    Well I've had a message from L/Sgt Swinn's granddaughter which cleared up the story. The story about his death by machine gun fire on the deck of a boat was published in the local paper , their source unknown. But an officer of the unit visited his widow sometime later and gave her the true story. L/Sgt Swinn had been sent ahead by motorcycle to Brest ( she wasn't sure why ) After doing what ever he was doing there he found some of his unit were straggling and being all young men he set off back to round them up. During this trip he was involved in an accident on his motorcycle and killed.
    gmyles likes this.
  5. noggin1969

    noggin1969 Well-Known Member

    JERICHO and BFBSM like this.

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