3 RTR Poperinge Belgium Dec '44 - March '45

Discussion in 'RAC & RTR' started by Frank Flattery, Jun 23, 2020.

  1. Frank Flattery

    Frank Flattery Well-Known Member

    Hi all, been a while, hope you're all well.

    Bertin (from Poperinge) has asked me to help him gather any info on Trooper Dennis Le Roy, 14272316 ( http://undyingmemory.net/Wixoe/le-roy-dennis.html ), kia 1/4/45.

    Jan, an ex-colleague of mine remembers Dennis very well as he stayed with his parents late 1944 early 1945. Jan must have been three or four years (old) when Leroy was with his family (who happened to live in the same street as my grandparents and only yards away from Briekedreef where your (grand)dad was billeted upon the Six Wicke family).

    Apart from the link, I haven't found anything on him, so I've been concentrating on events of 1st April to establish squadron, etc. The WD mentions 1 kia and various wounded, but looking at the Tank Casualties for that day ( 11th Armoured Division, Tank Casualties, 1945 ) it states 6 kia. Trooper Le Roy (according to the bio) was an Operator, which possibly links him to D15, D22, D18 & D49, all of which resulted in the death of the Operators. A bad day for Operators for sure.

    D15 mentions the attack happening at 'last light', which would imply it was an A Squadron tank: 1800; A Sqn engaged by SPs or tks which KO one tk. 1 OR killed, 4 wounded. However, D15 notes indicate the driver was also killed (maybe later from his wounds?).

    D18 & D49 both state tanks hit from a range of 10-15 yards, which suggests panzerfausts, so maybe: 1030; Enemy reported in area 945066. B Sqn have two tanks “bazookaed” at road block area 928062. 4 ORs wounded. No mention of any fatalities in WD. (By the way, what does H.C. mean exactly?)

    D22 mentions tank being hit by A.P from S.P., so could be:1530; A Sqn having party. AP fire in their area, enemy movement from area 899082,engaging inf and bazookas. 1 SP firing from BEVENSEN 8982 KOs one of our tanks. Again, no mention of any fatalities.

    D13, also listed as being 'bazookaed' on this date, doesn't seem to appear in the WD (unless it was one of the B Squadron tanks, although I tend to think they were D18 & 49) but mentions the gunner as being killed.

    The War Graves site lists his initial burial site as (rV) 972054, see image, and I guess the incident occured somewhere nearby. I've attached a map indicating where the Squadrons were when attacked (using the WD refs), what do you think?
    Then again, I could just wait till John's book comes out (next week, I believe!), maybe it's all there!


    PS: It's also possible that Stanley Varty and Albert Riggs (see previous posts) were the D15 casualties, making them A Squadron.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2020
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  2. Frank Flattery

    Frank Flattery Well-Known Member

    And while I'm here.. can anyone identify the regiment?
    The cap badge looks like 1st Lothians and Border Yeomanry, albeit in non-shiny mode, the arm badge..

    Attached Files:

  3. SDP

    SDP Incurable Cometoholic

    John Russell's book 'Theirs the Strife' is appearing as we speak : received my copy from Helion yesterday. It looks superb and well worth the wait.

    Edit: John's book starts in earnest a little later than 1st April 1945 so doesn't describe the above incident.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2020
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  4. S54

    S54 Junior Member

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  5. Frank Flattery

    Frank Flattery Well-Known Member

    I was just having another look at this photo, and the scan that accompanies it (see below), could he be Pioneer Corps?

    The cap badge is similar in shape, P.C. = Pioneer Corps, B.L.A. = British Liberation Army?????
    EDIT: Actually, I'm pretty sure he is, the arm badge indicated 'Lines of Communication' troop, so he would have kept the roads between the fighting units and supply depots in good shape.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
  6. Ramiles

    Ramiles Researching 9th Lancers, 24th L and SRY

    IWM B 13424
    Object description
    A Sherman tank crew of 29th Armoured Brigade, 11th Armoured Division, warm themselves around a petrol stove in the village of Mesnil-Eglise near Dinant in Belgium, 4 January 1945. Left to right: Sgt Adam Kesson; Tpr John Davies; Tpr Jack Butterworth; Tpr Ronald Selwyn.


    IWM B 13425
    Object description
    Original wartime caption: A Little Bit off the Top - Tpr. Ronald Selwyn, Hampstead, clears snow from the hatch of his driver's seat.


    IWM B 13426
    Object description
    Original wartime caption: A borrowed broom, and Tpr. John Edward Davies, of Wrexham cleared the tank turret of snow.


    IWM B 13427
    Object description
    Original wartime caption: Tpr. Eric French of Sandhurst, saw to it that the snow on the front machine-gun turret was swept away.

    Last edited: Mar 9, 2022

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