Sjt JW Andrews - Hampshire Regiment died 5th December 1943

Discussion in 'Italy' started by Skoyen89, Nov 24, 2018.

  1. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    On the Waterstock, Oxfordshire War memorial is Serjeant Joseph W Andrews who died on 5th December 1943 and is buried in Minturno Cemetery. He is given as 2nd Bn Hampshire Regiment.

    Can anyone tell me what the 2nd Battalion were doing at the end of November/early December 1943? I think they were in 128th Infantry Brigade in 46 Division on the Garigliano.

    The Casualty List on FMP shows him as Died of Wounds. It may be that he was wounded a few days earlier and was in a hospital when he died. The CWGC site suggests he was buried initially at Sessa Military Cemetery and 'concentrated' into Minturno on 13 Dec 1944 (so just over a week after his death). Others at Sessa seem to come from the same Division and there is another buried at Minturno who was first buried at Sessa after dying of wounds in a hospital. Does anyone know which hospitals were in the area or any more about Sessa Military Cemetery?
  2. bexley84

    bexley84 Well-Known Member

    Not sure if the front for 46th Div had actually quite reached the Garigliano river in early Dec 1943, fighting over Monte Camino elsewhere on the front was still going on .. by the way, I note that the reburial at Minturno was a year Dec 1944.

    A very knowledgeable member minden1759 will know the precise details and dates etc for 128 Brigade.
  3. Tony56

    Tony56 Member Patron

    Maybe a clue here from the book 'Only the enemy in front' -

    " At the end of 1943, 46 Recce was providing flank protection for the division in the SanMartino area in front of the Gustav Line. The first few days of of 1944 saw the regiment in an infantry role having relieved 16th DLI; its vehicles were left, for the first time, some four miles behind the forward positions. ........ On 5 January 46 Recce passed to 23 Armoured Brigade for the crossing of the Garigliano River.

    San Martino

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  4. minden1759

    minden1759 Senior Member


    The Second Battle of Camino started on 2 Dec 43 with 56 Inf Div assaulting up the massive feature towards the tiny monastery at the very top. 201 Gds Bde from the same Division had attempted the same feat in early Nov 43 but had failed. This time, they would be accompanied on their left through the village of Calabritto by 46 Inf Div.

    I think that Sjt Andrews was killed in that operation.


    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
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  5. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    Couple of pages from The Royal Hampshire Regiment 1918-1954 by David Scott Daniell, for the end of November / beginning of Decemeber 1943.

    Attached Files:

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  6. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member

    As part of Operation Konker (10 corps attack on Camino) 128 Brigade were on the left of 46 Division's and tasked with advancing on Santa Maria di Mortola via Massa La Valle. The below is the appendix to 56 Division's Operation Order for Konker. 139 Brigade were tasked with Calabritto on the division's right.


    Below is a contemporary map showing the locations of the objectives. Massa La Valle is about the location of the village now called Le Querce. The brigade was advancing from the area of Sipicciano\Corigliano (not on map).


    Below is a map from 46 Division history showing the area of operations albeit with less details.


    According to the divisional history 128 Brigade sent out patrols from 2 and 5 Hants on the 2nd December to Massa La Valle and on the following night they established positions on the edge of it. It doesn't appear much happened after that in this sector; the Hampshires advanced to Mortola on the 6th without opposition due to enemy withdrawing across the Garigliano.
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  7. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    Many thanks to all your efforts and replies - sorry for the delay in responding. I will work through this and see if I can get the 2nd Hants War Diary next time I am in Kew. FAE Crews book on the Medical aspects of the Italian Campaign arrived in the post today so I will have to plough through it to see if I can identify the hospital(s) at Sessa.

    Again thanks.
  8. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member


    It may not be a hospital at Sessa. Each division usually had a designated cemetery location (sometimes mentioned in operational orders) and sometimes Brigades had the same.

    I’m down in Kew at the weekend - if I have chance I’ll look at 2 Hants WD for the period.

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  9. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    Hi Gary

    Yes, I have come across the 'Brigade Cemeteries' when researching another casualty. Thanks for the offer of Kew. I've sent you a PM.

  10. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    FAE Crews book on the Medical aspects of the Italian Campaign says that as of 31 December 1943 there was a hospital at Sessa - it looks like 140 Field Ambulance, with 10 Field Surgical Unit attached. 140 Field Ambulance was attached to 56 Div.
  11. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member


    I have 140 FA WDs. They moved to Sessa on 16th/17th December which makes sense as 56 Division took up that sector from 46 Div. In their December WD their is the Medical Instruction for the second Camino operation which includes this about 46 Division's arrangements. this explains why Sjt Andrews was initially buried at Sessa.


    I have copied 2 Hants WD - not much of detail in there but will post tomorrow.

  12. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    Thanks Gary. That suggests he was treated in 184 Field Ambulance given the date of death?
  13. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member

    Yes, I would have thought so.

    It has also clarified for me why a small number of casualties from 56 Division during their time at Camino are in Minturno while the rest are in Cassino.
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  14. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member

    Here is the WD entry from early December - nothing much of note apart from patrolling but gives more accurate location details than the 46 Div history. I copied all WD from Sep - Dec 43.

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  15. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    Hi Gary As you say no clues in there but thanks for posting it. Normally I would have expected to see a comment if one of the patrols had had a soldier wounded even if just 'one BOR wounded'. When was the last time the Battalion took casualties according to the War Diary?
  16. Gary Tankard

    Gary Tankard Well-Known Member

    Hi, I don't find it unusual to be honest - it depends on the battalion. A quick scan through their diary for October and November reveals one single mention of an OR being killed in a patrol across the Volturno in October. However, a casual look on CWGC shows they lost 5 ORs killed on 13th October - there is a lengthy description of that day in the WD but not a single mention of any casualties. There are actual references to 'no casualties' ac couple of times though in reference to specific instances.

    The CWGC also records two casualties on from 2 Hants on 3rd December (Upton and Dobbie)- I guess they could have died of wounds from a previous action but they are also buried in Minturno and the battalion had been out of the line since mid-November. However they were not moved from Sessa from what I can tell.
  17. Skoyen89

    Skoyen89 Senior Member

    Hi Gary Thanks for looking - I guess we will never know!!

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