Grandfather captured at Tobruk: Norman Eric HAZELL, South African POW

Discussion in 'Prisoners of War' started by Ash’s, Jun 5, 2024.

  1. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

    I don’t want to hijack someone’s post but can’t see how to post my own question.

    we believe my grandfather was captured at Tobruk, we don’t know his unit but he was South African. He was Norman Eric Hazell. Where can I find out more information.

    please can someone tell me how to not hijack post and post my own question. Sorry again.
     
    Owen likes this.
  2. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  3. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

  4. cjd_101

    cjd_101 Junior Member

    Hi Ash,

    Given that folks from so many different units were captured at the fall of Tobruk, I suspect that the best way to uncover the details that you are looking for is to request a copy of your grandfather's service record or certificate of service from the South African Military Records Centre. If that is not something that you feel like doing yourself then there are researchers on here that specialise in securing copies of such items for a fee. A quick search here will bring-up a few names.

    In the meantime, your grandfather's service number was 7100 and, for a time, he was held at PG-85 near Tuturano and later at Stalag VIII-C near Sagan, where his POW number was 75991.

    Good luck in your search!

    Regards,

    Col
     
    Owen likes this.
  5. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

    Wow. Thank you so much. Does the records center have a website?
     
    cjd_101 likes this.
  6. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

    Col

    My maternal grandfather was also at Tobruk. We were told he escaped being captured and carried a wounded comrade out through the ring of Germans surrounding them.

    He was Renier Adrian Swiegers. Born 28 Feb 1916. Again we do not know his regiment or any other details of his military service. Do you see any details for him please.
    Thank you
     
  7. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

  8. cjd_101

    cjd_101 Junior Member

  9. cjd_101

    cjd_101 Junior Member

    Alas, I had no luck with him :-(
    Happy Hunting!
     
  10. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

    Thank you for trying. Probably because he wasn’t a prisoner.
     
    cjd_101 likes this.
  11. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

    cjd_101 likes this.
  12. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

  13. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

  14. cjd_101

    cjd_101 Junior Member

    You are most welcome! Hopefully, the SA Defence Force Archives will be able to assist!
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2024
  15. travers1940

    travers1940 Well-Known Member

    Hi Ash

    Sorry I sometimes forget to give background.

    When released pow's returned to the UK they were encouraged to complete a questionaire about when & where captured, camps held in, work they had to do, escape attempts & any incidents such as war crimes they witnessed. Many did not complete them for various reasons. There is an example on page one of this thread on this site for a soldier who escaped while pow in Italy, but the form was the same for those returning from Germany.
    R.A. North Africa & POW South Italy

    Travers
     
  16. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    Back to the opening post and the request for help with Norman Eric Hazell.

    Member of the 2nd Bn.Durham Light Infantry (DLI) in Stalag 8C 1942-1945. From an undated entry on: The Wartime Memories Project - The Second World War - Those Who Served Search just with Hazell.

    The DLI were in North Africa, though not in Tobruk, rather a battle nearby; three battalions formed 151 St Infantry Brigade and they were mauled, losing 200 men as POWs. See: 151st Infantry Brigade (United Kingdom) - Wikipedia and Durham Light Infantry - Wikipedia

    An online search "tobruk" + "durham light infantry" site:ww2talk.com found a number of threads to peruse. Same when using "151st infantry brigade" site:ww2talk.com

    His wife:
    From: https://www.myheritage.com/names/mabel_hazell

    Not a member so some blanks e.g. his birth place.

    Another family genealogy site has five men of the name and b. 1906 in South Africa.

    Is this your grandfather?
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2024
  17. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

     
  18. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

  19. Ash’s

    Ash’s Member

    His second wife was as follows and they had 2 children still living.


     
  20. davidbfpo

    davidbfpo Patron Patron

    Your big problem is he was in an unknown South African unit. 33k prisoners were taken when Tobruk surrendered on 21/6/1942 and South Africans made up the largest single contingent. In theory you could identify all the most likely units who surrendered and then try to find him in memoirs, unit magazines etc. Get his record from the SANDF Archives is the only way ahead.
     

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