4463743 Ronald Thomas PATRICK, 9th Bn DLI: 11/03/1945, POW

Discussion in 'Durham Light Infantry' started by Blueeyes60, Jan 16, 2023.

  1. Blueeyes60

    Blueeyes60 New Member

    Hello All
    I am new to the group so apologies if I am posting in the wrong group. I am researching my kids great uncle Ronald T Patrick Service Number 4463743 POW number 82201 who was captured in 1942 in Libya. I have recently had sight of his records held by the National Archives WO 416 but they appear to be very scant (two lines on a document, his card, photograph and finger print) considering he was held captive for nearly three years.
    We know he ended up in Stalag VIIIA (344) Lamsdorf (dont know when but think1943) but prior to this he was listed as MIA. We understand he was previously in a POW camp in Italy. He died in March 1945 aged 28. How he died or where he died is a mystery. He was buried in Kalupy outside Prague but then re interred in the commonwealth war cemetary in Prague.
    I have heard of the long march when the prisoners were moved although the first burial site apparently is off course from the route.
    If anyone can help with any additional info and also direct me to where his Italy records might be I would be so grateful.
    Thank you so much

    Service Number: 4463743
    Regiment & Unit: Durham Light Infantry, 9th Bn.
    Date of Death: 11 March 1945
    Buried or commemorated at PRAGUE WAR CEMETERY
    Grave Reference: II. D. 11.
    Location:| Czech Republic
    CL1 likes this.
  2. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    Welcome to the forum.

    Sadly you are a day too late to initiate an early enquiry with Swiss Red Cross so you’ll have to wait until May 2023 to make an application on the online application from that will appear on the day in this link -

    Requests for information about people held during Spanish Civil War or Second World War: Quarterly limit reached

    You should get a reply by email within 6 to 8 weeks listing all the camps where he was held in Italy & Germany (maybe even in Libya) - but not detailing work camps of which there were numerous under Stalag 8 B (Lamsdorf).

    You may be lucky and get a copy of a letter/postcard written by your relative that may identify a work camp. I did for a relative in Lamsdorf (the work camp was actually in Slovakia over 100 miles from the main camp). I would make a request in the free text box for detail about his death but bear in mind ICRC may not hold any information about it.

    Other members may be able to attach copies of his entries in the official casualty lists but again it likely won’t state any more than “Died Whilst POW”.

    You can apply for his army service file but it will likely have little detail about his time as POW or the circumstances of his death.

    There may be mention of him in local newspapers available via Findmypast site.

    Bear in mind there were multiple columns of POW marching westwards. They did not all follow an identical route.

    Last edited: Jan 17, 2023
  3. Blueeyes60

    Blueeyes60 New Member

    Thank you so much Steve and thats a shame I missed the date. Thank you for pointing out about the march having different routes, I wasn't aware of that.
    I am a complete novice researching war documents so its brilliant to have such knowledge available to tap in to.
    Thank you again
    CL1 likes this.
  4. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Ronald is recorded in the file WO392/21 held at the National Archives. This is a list of Allied POWs held by the Italians up until August 1943. Sadly, no camp number is present against his name, rank and Army number. Other members with greater knowledge of the subject will hopefully be able to assist further:

    CL1, Tom OBrien and Blueeyes60 like this.
  5. Blueeyes60

    Blueeyes60 New Member

    Oh wow, thank you. Why might that be do you think? Is it the norm not listing the camp and how would he have got from Italy to Lamsdorf?
  6. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Hi, it is not the norm for there to be no camp number present, but it does happen a good number of times I'm afraid. I believe the date of August 1943 is to do with the impending surrender of Italy to the Allies on September 8th.

    As I say, this is not my area of research, I just happened to inherit this file from Kew. There are other forum members that might be able to assist. Hopefully they will see your posts presently. Sorry I couldn't help out more.
    Blueeyes60 likes this.
  7. Blueeyes60

    Blueeyes60 New Member

    No please dont apologise, every little bit of knowledge helps especially when I know so little. Thank you so much for taking the time to check, I really appreciate it.
    bamboo43 likes this.
  8. Tullybrone

    Tullybrone Senior Member


    Forum member vitellino may be able to give you a reason why his camp is not specified on the Italian list.

    POW were transferred to Germany by train after the Italian surrender and the Germans took over the camps. Your grandfather may not have been sent directly to Lamsdorf. His ICRC papers should reveal all his camp locations.

    Guy Hudson, CL1 and bamboo43 like this.
  9. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member

    Thanks Steve, I was hoping the vitellino might comes across Bobbi's posts.
    Tullybrone likes this.
  10. Guy Hudson

    Guy Hudson Looker-upper

    Could it be that he was also Campo 82, along with Patrick 76 and Patrick 71, as they don't appear to be arranged alphabetically, just by service number?
    EDIT I see the Camp numbers are duplicated on lower entries, so it rules that out.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2023
  11. Mr Jinks

    Mr Jinks Bit of a Cad

    Name: Ronald [T] Patrick.
    Date of Birth: 15/06/1916.
    Place of Birth: Acton.
    Address from Census (1921). 4 Palmerston Road, South Acton, Brentford, Middlesex,
    Regiment[Durham Light Infantry
    Battalion. 9th DLI
    Service Number: 4463743.
    Enlisted .1940
    Posted Missing 27 June 1942
    Date of Capture: 01/07/1942.
    Theatre of Capture: Libya.
    Place of Capture. Gazala
    Camp Name/Number: Stalag VIIIA Gorlitz.
    PoW number: 82201.
    Date of Death:11 March 1945

    Number of Photographs on WO 416: 1.
    Number of Fingerprints: 1

    CL1 likes this.
  12. vitellino

    vitellino Senior Member

    No camp against a name means that the POW had left a main camp to go to a work camp.

    By the date the register was published (August 1943) nearly all these work camps were in the north of Italy - PG 133 Novara, PG 112 Turin, PG 146 Mortara, PG 148 Bussolengo near Verona etc.

    The prisoners of war were sent by train from Italy to Stalag VIIA Moosburg and from there dispatched to a camp elsewhere in German -held territories.

    CL1, Quarterfinal, Tullybrone and 2 others like this.
  13. Cpl Hadaway

    Cpl Hadaway Active Member

    Might be worth researching the soldiers with adjacent German POW numbers to 82201. These men would have been literally standing by him when his German POW number was issued in late 1943 and thus would have probably followed the same path from Italy. Liberation questionnaires at Kew, if these men completed them, not all did, will give details of the camps they were in in Italy and Germany and the dates. Also quite probable that one or the other of these POWs on either side of him, possibly the Londoner, was his 'mucker.' that is, the friend he shared his Red Cross parcels with, who may have still been with him into his German work camp:

    POW number 82200 344 Fiddis, Cpl W J, 6976526, E Suss

    GRC: Name: William [J] Fiddis. Date of Birth: 29/09/1911. Place of Birth: Omagh, Eire. Service: [British Army].
    Rank: [Corporal]. Regiment/Unit/Squadron: [The Royal Sussex Regiment]. Service Number: 6976526. Date of Capture: 28 October 1942. Theatre of Capture: Alamein. Camp Name/Number: Stalag VIIIA Gorlitz. PoW number: 82200. Date of Death: [unspecified]. Number of Photographs: 1. Number of Fingerprints: 1. Number of X-rays: 0. Number of Cards: 4.

    POW number 82202 344 Banks, Pte C, 4749488 Gn How
    Name: Cornelius Banks. Date of Birth: 14 September 1919. Place of Birth: London. Service: British Army. Rank: Private.
    Regiment/Unit/Squadron: [Green Howards]. Service Number: 4749488. Date of Capture: [unspecified]. Theatre of Capture: [unspecified]. Camp Name/Number: Stalag VIIIA Gorlitz. PoW number: 82202. Date of Death: [unspecified].
    Number of Photographs: 1. Number of Fingerprints: 1. Number of X-rays: 0. Number of Cards: 2.
    82203 8A Eyers, Dmr T A B, 2655205, C G
    (No German Record Card.)
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2023
  14. Cpl Hadaway

    Cpl Hadaway Active Member

    This is an eyewitness account of a man who, judging by his German POW number, 81828, may have been aboard the same set of cattle trucks which took 82201 Pte Patrick, up from Italy into Germany: His detailing of the camps he was held at and the dates for the same are contained within the narrative.

    81828 344 Wilkinson, Pte Jonathan, 5511996.
    Captured serving with 5th Hamp, at Sidi Nsir, Tunisia, 2/43.
    Transported to Italy on 'SS Congo' Previously held at Camps PG 66, 53, 82 and 19. POW number assigned at Stalag 8A.

    See this external site:

    Identical account here:

    Extract begins:

    .....After three months 'rest' we were ready for work, and we were transported north to Laterina camp. Here we heard that Mussolini was dead and the Italian guards nearly went crazy with delight. 23rd August we were moved north to Camp 82XV at Borge San Lorenzo where we began to build a new sugar cane factory. On 8th September, 'Peace with Italy' and the guards became more relaxed. I found that I could slip under the camp wire to scrounge extra food in the surrounding farms and fields. One foray found me face to face with a farmer, but instead of being reported he treated me to a slap up meal. My attempt to escape ended in failure after two days.

    Thoughts of freedom were ended when the Germans arrived on 13th, and we were quickly transferred to P.G 19 at Bologna in cattle trucks. Two days later we were on the way to southern Germany.

    Life as a POW in Southern Germany

    On 19th September, after 3 days by train in a cattle wagon with 60 mates and no food, we arrived at Stalag VIIIA Gorlitz Mays, near Dresden in South Germany. This was a holding camp for POWs, with over 500 of us in a hut. I received my POW ID 81828. Here we were allowed to play football and I learnt to box under the guidance of Ambrose (ABA middle weight champion) and John Evans (Army light heavyweight champion). On 6th October, I received my first Red Cross parcel for 2 months, and my new POW kit. We were sent out to work in local Kommandos (work camps).

    Life as a POW in Upper Silesia

    On 5th November 1943, we were pushed into another cattle wagon and transported to the extreme cold and snow of Upper Silesia (now in Poland). This was to be my 'home' for the next 14 months. At the first kommando Zabrzec, we worked on railway sidings....

    German Record Card:

    Name: Jonathan Wilkinson. Date of Birth: 21/04/1920. Place of Birth: Itchen. Service: British Army. Rank: Private.Regiment/Unit/Squadron: [The Hampshire Regiment]. Service Number: 5511996. Date of Capture: 26/02/1943. Theatre of Capture: Tunisia. Camp Name/Number: Stalag VIIIA Gorlitz. PoW number: 81828. Date of Death: [unspecified]. Number of Photographs: 1. Number of Fingerprints: 1. Number of X-rays: 0. Number of Cards: 2.

    These 1945 Liberation Questionnaire transcriptions I made for another project detail a similar passage north:

    81337 344 Todd, Pte Joseph William, 4469361, 16 DLI.
    Camp PG 66 3/43 to 5/5/43; PG 82 6/5/43 to 12/9/43; work camp Florence, construction, labouring, 5/43 to 9/43; Stalag 8A 15/9/43 to 10/10/43; Stalag 344 11/10/43 to 7/5/45. Work camps in Germany: Tawnawitz 10/43 to 2/44, railways; Sowsnowwitz 2/44 to 6/44, coal mine; Hindenburg, 6/44 to 9/44 coal mine.

    81350 8A Martin, Pte James William, 4469274, 16 DLI.
    Camp PG 66 18/3/43 to 17/6/43; PG 82 18/6/43 to 2/7/43; Italian work camp, bricklaying, 3/7/43 to 18/9/43; Stalag 8A Germany 18/9/43 to 2/11/43; a work camp of Stalag 8A, stone quarry, 2/11/43 to 8/5/45.

    81778 344 Poll, L/Cpl John James, 4465697, 16 DLI.
    Camp PG 82 3/43 to 8/43, work camp XV Borgo San Lorenzo of PG 82, building work, 8/43 to 9/43; Stalag 8A Gorlitz, 28/9/43 to 10/43; work camp Tarnowitz, 10/43 to 2/44, railway work, work camp E 579 Niwka, coal mining, 2/44 to 17/6/44; E 596 Jaworzno, 17/6/44 to 19/1/45, coalmining. German POW Number 81778.

    Patrick could have gone to any one of literally hundreds of work camps, or a succession of them, after leaving Stalag 8A...
    bamboo43 likes this.

Share This Page