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Cameron Highlanders far east WWII

#1
Evening gentlemen,

just been talking to Mrs 5039 & shes just came across her grandfathers regimental details in her late fathers possessions. It turns out he was in the far east with the Camerons, the vague information we have ( Although his reg'l number etc is to hand ) he was taken prisoner, we know he worked on the railway, but we dont know what Bn he was with etc, any gurus out there can enlightnen us as to where he probably was?


regards
5039
 
#2
Don't know if this will help found this while going through the new Para Data site.

The 5th (Scottish) Parachute Battalion was formed from the 7th Battalion the Cameron Highlanders in May 1942 and became part of the 2nd Parachute Brigade.

It fought in North Africa and Italy in 1942-3, remaining behind in Italy with the re-designated 2nd Independent Parachute Brigade. It operated as line infantry in Italy, jumped into Southern France in August 1944 and was part of the Athens occupation force in the winter of 1944-5.

After the war it served with the 6th Airborne Division in Palestine until it was disbanded in 1948. With the formation of the 16th Independent Parachute Brigade Group in 1948 the 5th 9Scottish) Battalion was re-designated 2 PARA in July.
 
#4
Thanks for the update , but I know the guy was taken as a POW & iirc her dad mentioned Singapore, so I presume that he was taken there, & spent most of the war on the Death railway..til liberation then apparently refused transport home so he could help to finish what he started!"


Appreicate your efforts T4
 
#6
hmm interesting Tiger, cheers.
Apparently he was always very complimentary about the Gurkhas, dont know what what role he may have performed to have been involved with them but this has given me something to get my teeth into, thanks for the replys guys
 
#7
sandy_boots said:
Was he perhaps in the Cameronians (Scottish Rifles)?
1 Cameronians went from India to Burma in Feb 1942 then back again, so there was plenty of scope to be captured. The reconstituted battalion returned to Burma as Chindits in 1944.
If there is any doubt about his regiment, someone here might be able to confirm it from his number.
 
#8
However if you look up the 14th Army orbat the Queens Own Cameron Highlanders come under the 5th Brigade. Not to be mistaken with the Cameronians as someone posted earlier.
 
#9
WaltOnTheMildSide said:
sandy_boots said:
Was he perhaps in the Cameronians (Scottish Rifles)?
1 Cameronians went from India to Burma in Feb 1942 then back again, so there was plenty of scope to be captured. The reconstituted battalion returned to Burma as Chindits in 1944.
If there is any doubt about his regiment, someone here might be able to confirm it from his number.

Ill grab the number this wekend, if anyone can help then id be grateful, the Mrs is quite intruiged to know what the owld fella done
 
#10
tiger stacker said:
However if you look up the 14th Army orbat the Queens Own Cameron Highlanders come under the 5th Brigade. Not to be mistaken with the Cameronians as someone posted earlier.
Sorry, my bad, didnt realise there were 2 separate regiments :oops:
 
#12
tiger stacker said:
However if you look up the 14th Army orbat the Queens Own Cameron Highlanders come under the 5th Brigade. Not to be mistaken with the Cameronians as someone posted earlier.
1 QO Cameron Highlanders only went into Burma in 1944. My gut feeling is that it's unlikely any of them would have ended up on the railway if they'd been captured.

It's not clear if this post covers the Second World War but it might be a start:
Cameron Highlanders 2921001 - 2966000
Cameronians (Scottish Rifles) 3233001 - 3299000
 
#13
If he turns out to be Queens Own Cameron Highlanders send me a PM, as I'm writing currently writing a dissertation on the 2nd British Division which contained the QOCH so I've got quite alot of info on their movements.
 
#14
Hi guys sorry about the tawdriness in replying, haven't managed to get the regt'l number yet, it has been sent away for insurance purposes..I will up date with the necessary as soon as we are back in posession

regards
5039

edited to add my thanks to those who replyed, cheers
 
#15
Just returned from Thailand and visited Kanchanaburi(the bridge site) also travelled to Hellfire Pass. Absolutely humbling to see what those guys went through.

I would suggest reading "The Colonel Of Tamarkan" This is the true story of the real Col Bogey, who was also captured at Singapore. The book gives an accurate portrayal of life in those railway camps, and describes in detail how Col Phil Toosey, an old school TA officer, with a deep sense of service to his men, battled against the Jap system to keep his men alive. Incidently many of the A & S captured in Singapore were under his command in the camps.
 
#17
Re: 1st Btln QOCH / 5th Brigade / 2nd Divn in 39-40 BEF.
After watching and reading the script of 'Atonement', I was staggered by the ignorance (or stupidity) of the dialogue. Talk about rewriting Dunkirk's history...! Bottom line is my father served in 1st Btln QOCH as a regular pre WW2 and back in from reserves in September '39. I have his original service records, books and pics covering 1928-35 and 1939-46. He and a few pals got out two weeks after Operation Dynamo ended. Unfortunately real details about his/the btlns movements in the May/June withrawal to Dunkirk are scarce or fragmented at best (only some 60-70 men got back and sadly I can't trace living survivors).
I'm still researching historical archives, memoirs, maps, but would really appreciate and share any info on the subject. Note: After re-grouping my father ended up on Aruba in the Dutch West Indies with the 4th QOCH for two years before retraining/transferring to RAMC as a nursing orderely onboard HMHS Llandovery Castle.
 
#18
Re: 1st Btln QOCH in the Far East. WW2. Queries Unravelled!
According to official QOCH records and diaries, the 1st Btln Queens Own Cameron Highlanders embarked from Liverpool onboard the MS Marnix on 11th April 1942, bound for India. The shipboard (convoy) journey went via the W.Indies to S.Africa where they disembarked for a few days before moving to India for "extensive training" which lasted "a year and nine months". In March 1944 they moved to Assam as part of the 5th Infantry Brigade and took part in the battle of Kohima in April '44. Their front line fighting ops thereafter took in Yazagyo at the south end of the Kabaw Valley, then Kalewa, Shwegyin, Chaungzon, Shwebo, Thetkegyin and so on, daily from village to village, all the way to the River Irrawaddy and beyond to Mandalay - a timeline running up to May 1945. They returned to Secunderabad in Southern India in June '45. After VJ Day, the battalion was split into two groups - Jap Force (destined for the Japan Occupation force on board HMT Dunera in 1946) and 'Rel-pats' (who were destined for release/repatriation). I hope this overview answers most of the posts and fills in missing details - especially which QOCH battalion was in the Far East.
 

the_boy_syrup

LE
Book Reviewer
#19
Jimmy_Kranke said:
I would suggest reading "The Colonel Of Tamarkan" This is the true story of the real Col Bogey, who was also captured at Singapore. The book gives an accurate portrayal of life in those railway camps, and describes in detail how Col Phil Toosey, an old school TA officer, with a deep sense of service to his men, battled against the Jap system to keep his men alive. Incidently many of the A & S captured in Singapore were under his command in the camps.
Alot of Japanese POW's picketed cinemas when Bridge over the River Kwai was out due to the way the Col was percieved
He had to battle to clear his name as alot of people thought the film was accurate

Fus 5039

My Grandads brother died in Singapore whilst in captivity
He is listed as part of 53 Inf. Bde. G.P. Coy

I'm trying to research it myself as he was a jock and grandad always said he was with a Jock Regiment when captured
Don't know if that helps
 

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