2932934 Private Thomas KING, 2nd Bn Q.O.C.H, POW, E&E: Looking for information.

Discussion in 'Searching for Someone & Military Genealogy' started by Thomas.Y, Nov 27, 2023.

  1. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

    Hi there, I’m trying to find information about my Great Grandfather and namesake Thomas King.

    His serial number is 2932934 and he was ranked as a Private.

    He served in 2nd Battalion of the Q.O.C.H and was among those captured in Tobruk in 1942.

    He was a POW in Italy PG 146/14 and had escaped on the 10th of September 1943 and arrived in Switzerland on the 22nd of September 1943

    I’ve tried to find what I can online and referenced it with information I’ve received from my grandmother and her sisters but I’m unable to find exactly what I’m looking for, any help would be appreciated

    I live in Melbourne, Australia so tracking down information for someone that was born and grew up in Scotland is very difficult


    Attached Files:

  2. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Hello Thomas,

    What exactly are you looking for?

    First of all, are you sure that you have the correct service number? IN QOCH there was another T.King, also taken prisoner at Tobruk, number 2935309, who was held in Campo PG 60 at Colle di Compito near Lucca before May 1943.

    On the other hand, T. KIng 2932934 was held in PG 53 Macerata before being sent to PG 146/14, a sub-camp of PG 146 Mortara at Castellaro de' Giorgi. I know quite a lot about PG 146 in general and have translated a book about it - Prisoners of War in the Lomellina by Giuseppe Zucca, available from Lulu.com.

    I will check on the casualty lists for T. King and edit.

    Both captured at Tobruk, only 293294 got to Switzerland. HE WAS THE ONE IN PG 60 LUCCA, my mistake above. This interests me as when PG 60 was cleared in May 1943, 75 men were sent to PG 112/1 Ponte Stura, Turin, including my 'old friend' from QOCH Donald Russell. I wasn't aware that anyone had been sent to PG 146. On the other hand, a large number of men from PG 53 were sent to the various work camps which formed PG 146.

    It appears that the other remained in hiding in Italy until March-April 1945 WO 417/90 as he wasn't recaptured and sent to Germany/German occupied countries.

    Best wishes,

    Last edited: Nov 27, 2023
    Tony56 likes this.
  3. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

    Im trying to see where he was at the start of the war and where he was after returning from Switzerland.

    I’ve got a service document at my grandmothers house saying he joined up in 1939 and was discharged in 1945, there is also a copy of a local newspaper clipping from Dundonald, Scotland talking about his escape from PG 146
  4. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

    I have 2932934 Pte. T. King, 2nd Camerons, wounded March 1941. Later listed as missing 21/6/42 (Tobruk) later amended to POW. Campo 60. 1943 casualty list has him as being in a Neutral country, 1944 listed as arrived back in UK.
  5. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

    Thankyou very much. Do you by any chance have any information about about the 2nd Camerons before 1942?
  6. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

  7. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

  8. 51highland

    51highland Very Senior Member

    2nd Camerons were in India when they mobilised in July 1939. They moved to Egypt and trained for Desert warfare as part of 11th (Indian) Infantry Brigade of 4th Indian Division. When Italy entered the war June 1940 they joined General Richard O'Connor's Western Desert Force. The Italian advance began September 1940 and the first Infantry action was a raid by 2nd Camerons on the Italian camp at MAKTILA, 22nd-23rd October 1940. 9th December they took part in the attack on NIBEIWA Camp and in the capture of SIDI BARRANI next day. O'Connor's two divisions had destroyed an army 5 times their own Strength. January 1941 2nd Camerons landed at Port Sudan, ERITREA. Advancing through KASSALA, they spearheaded the 5th Indian Brigade attack at AGORDAT on 31st January 1941. At the time of T. KING'S wounding 2nd Camerons were involved in heavy fighting around KEREN. On the 3rd February 2nd Camerons succeeded in securing a hill (later known as CAMERON RIDGE) from which subsequent attacks were made. The assaults by 2nd Camerons on the 8,000 foot Mount SANCHI and Brig's Peak being amongst the hardest fighting of the operation. In this most successful attack, which broke through to KEREN, the 2nd Camerons lost 209 casualties, 41% of their strength. April 1941 2nd Camerons returned to Egypt.
  9. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

    Thanks mate, that’s all very interesting to read about
  10. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Thomas, I think the International Red Cross mixed up the camps for your grandfather and the other T. King. Your grandfather was the only one of the 19 POWs from PG 146/14 who got to Switzerland to have been sent there from PG 60. Eleven of the 19 were from either PG 53 or 59, which fits in with what I know about Camp PG 146 in general.

    You should send for his POW record on 22 January. It's free, but you have to get in there as soon as they open.
  11. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    When it arrives you will see that all his camps are listed. Please keep us informed.
  12. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

    where abouts would I find that?
  13. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

  14. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

  15. horsapassenger

    horsapassenger Senior Member

    This is his file from WO 208/4257

    Attached Files:

  16. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    Thanks. So my hunch was right. He DID go to PG 146/14 from Macerata, but via Lucca. Lucca was first emptied in the autumn of '43 due to its unhealthy location. It was then re-opened in the spring of '44.

    This is always the problem with WO 392/21. It's not unusual for the IRC to have omitted to register a serviceman's later moves, and here's an excellent example.

    Thomas.Y likes this.
  17. Andreas

    Andreas Working on two books

    2 Camerons were part of 11 Indian Infantry Bde, 4 Indian Inf Div. The Bde was captured almost entirely in Tobruk in June 1942. They had previously fought in Operation CRUSADER, where they were engaged in the 2nd battle of Bir el Gobi, the pursuit to the west, and then covered the coastal road during the retreat in January 1942.

    11th Indian Brigade in Crusader

    All the best

    Thomas.Y likes this.
  18. Thomas.Y

    Thomas.Y Member

    Thankyou very much

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