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John Hamblin's Research: Surnames McM-Murray

McMichael, William Alexander Lance Corporal

Selangor Local Defence Corps
Died on the 20th of January 1943 aged 47
William Alexander "Bill" McMichael was born at Edinburgh on the 6th of June 1895 the son of Bailie Hugh McMichael, a wholesale tea merchant, and Margaret McMichael of 2, Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, later of 33, Hillside Crescent, Edinburgh. He was educated at George Watson's College from 1901 to 1910 when he left to study dentistry and lodged at 30, Inverleith Gardens, Edinburgh.
On the outbreak of war he enlisted in 1914 as a Private in the 16th (Service) Battalion Royal Scots (Lothian Regiment) and served in A Company. He applied for a commission in the Royal Scots Regiment on his 20th birthday, the 6th of June 1915, in an application which was supported by John Alison, Headmaster of George Watson’s College. At a medical examination, which was held at Edinburgh on the same day, it was recorded that he was five feet six inches tall and that he weighed 141lbs. He was sent for officer training and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 16th Battalion on the 4th of June 1915 and joined the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion of his regiment at Ripon. He arrived at the front with two other officers and a draft of forty three replacements in the second week of March 1916, and joined them in the field while they were in billets at Erquinghem sur-le-Lys where he was attached to C Company.
On the morning of the 1st of July 1916, the 16th Battalion, Royal Scots was in trenches in front of the enemy held village of La Boisselle, on what would be the opening day of the Battle of the Somme. The enemy positions had been bombarded night and day for a week and at 7.25am that morning the supporting artillery fire quickened and at 7.28am there was an enormous explosion as a mine which had been placed under the enemy front line went up, showering the waiting Scots with debris. At 7.30am the whistles blew and the leading waves of British infantry set off towards the enemy wire but were held up there by machine gun fire and, unable to find a way through the barbed wire, they fell in great numbers. The 16th Battalion began their advance at 7.34am as part of the second wave and soon came under fire from a machine gun which had been placed on the lip of the newly formed mine crater. As C Company went over the top, enemy artillery fire began to fall and several men fell back from the ladders before they managed to get out of the trench. Bill McMichael was wounded in the right hand by machine gun fire while crossing no man’s land.
He was evacuated to the rear and embarked on board the hospital ship HMHS Asturias at Le Havre on the 4th of July, landing at Southampton later the same day. He was admitted to Yorkhill Hospital at Glasgow the following day. A Medical Board was convened at the 2nd Scottish General Hospital, Edinburgh on the 13th of August 1916 to consider his case. They wrote: - "He has had a machine gun wound of the right index and middle fingers, causing fracture of the 1st phalanx of the index. The wounds have now healed – some stiffness is left"
A further Medical Board sat at the Military Hospital, Edinburgh on the 7th of October 1916, which reported: - "He is quite fit as far as his general condition: there is however still slight stiffness of 1st finger and only partial flexion"
On the 30th of October 1916, he joined the Royal Flying Corps at Reading and after pilot training he was posted to No. 3 Reserve Squadron on the 16th of January 1917. He was posted to Egypt and embarked on board HMT Kalyan at Southampton on the 15th of March 1917. He landed at Alexandria on the 2nd of April 1917 where he joined No. 59 Reserve Squadron based at Aboukir on the 28th of May 1917. He embarked on board HT Aragon at Port Said on the 8th of June 1917 and landed at Marseilles from where he returned to the UK.
When he arrived home he joined 58 Squadron for advanced flying training. He was promoted to Lieutenant on the 1st of July 1917 and transferred to the General List for the Royal Flying Corps on the 17th of July 1917, being appointed as Flying Officer the same day. He was posted to 46 Training Squadron on the 3rd of September 1917 and to 59 Training Squadron on the 9th of September 1917. On the 3rd of October 1917 he was posted to 48 Squadron in France where he was attached to C Flight. He spent a short time in hospital from the 23rd of December 1917. At 10.45am on the 8th of March 1918, William McMichael and his Observer, 2nd Lieutenant EG Humphrey, took off with the Squadron for a patrol. At 11.45am, they were to the south east of La Fère when they engaged an enemy Albatross VIII Scout which was seen to go down out of control. Theirs was one of eight enemy aircraft credited to the Squadron that day.
On the 15th of May 1918 William McMichael took off for a patrol in a Bristol Fighter with Lieutenant Herbert Fernside Lumb as his Observer. They were one of five aircraft making up C Flight and were led by Captain Charles George Douglas Napier. At 2.15pm, they were flying at 17,000 feet over the village of Lamotte, some six miles behind the enemy lines, when Napier spotted seven enemy aircraft below and fired a red Very light to warn his comrades before leading them down to the attack. Two enemy Triplanes were sent spinning out of control in the first pass but C Flight was in turn attacked by six enemy Triplanes which surprised them from above. Napier's aircraft was seen to burst into flames, with the aircraft of Lieutenant Clifford Lee Glover last seen with two enemy aircraft on its tail and did not return. Also hit during the surprise attack was William McMichael's aircraft with both he and his Observer being wounded. In spite of their injuries they escaped the scene and were able to return to base. He returned to duty on the 2nd of June. He was posted to 32 Squadron on the 24th of June 1918 and was admitted to hospital at Etaples on the 30th of June. He was evacuated to England on the 3rd of July 1918 and was exempted from flying duties for a period of four weeks. He was posted to No. 1 Fighting School on the 2nd of August 1918 and was promoted to Acting Captain on the 2nd of October 1918. He was posted to 27 Training Depot Squadron on the 28th of January 1919. He was promoted to Acting Captain on the 21st of Feb 1919 and was posted to 55 Squadron on the 16th of April 1919. He was Mentioned in Despatches for "Valuable services", which was announced by the War Office on the 29th of August 1919. He was transferred to the Unemployed List on the 7th of November 1919 and retired from the Royal Air Force on the 26th of May1923.
After the war, he went to Malaya where he worked as a rubber planter at the Vallambrosa Estate, Selangor. He played for the Selangor Rugby XV at stand-off half for four years and represented an all Malaya XV in 1924. In 1925 he returned home for a short while before returning to manage a rubber estate at Banting. From March 1936, he was appointed as resident general manager for Kuala Kangsar Plantations Ltd at the Gapis Estate and later at the Sungai Biong Estate.
He was engaged to Dr Susanna May (nee Bernard later Heward) MD in October 1934. His wife worked as a Medical Officer for the Malayan Medical Service and she lived later at Malton House, East Horsley in Surrey.
On the outbreak of war he volunteered for service with the Royal Air Force but was rejected on medical grounds, instead he joined the Selangor Local Defence Corps as an ambulance driver. He was captured by the Japanese at the fall of Singapore on the 15th of February 1942 and died from diabetes mellitus at Changi camp.
He is buried at Kranji War Cemetery Plot 36 Row D Grave 8

McNeil, Alastair Simpson Bell Surgeon Lieutenant RNVR

HM Landing Ship Tank 422, Royal Navy
Killed in action on the 26th of January 1944 aged 28
Alastair Simpson Bell McNeil was born at Edinburgh on the 28th of January 1915 the only son of David Bell McNeil MA and Isabella P. McNeil of 7, Marchmont Street, Edinburgh. He was educated at George Watson's College until 1933 where he captained both the 1st Rugby XV and the 1st Cricket XI in 1933. He played in the Public Schools Rugby International match and entered Edinburgh University where he read medicine from the 3rd of October 1933.
He represented Scotland at Rugby as a prop forward, receiving his only cap against Ireland at Lansdown Road, Dublin on the 23rd of February 1935 when Ireland won by 12 points to 5. He continued to play rugby for Watsonians and was selected to represent Scotland at Cricket on three occasions. His first match was against Yorkshire which was played at Harrogate on the 11th and 12th of August 1937. Yorkshire scored 291 in their first innings with Scotland making 104 runs in reply of which McNeil scored 5. Forced to follow on, Scotland were all out for 143, of which McNeil made 23 before being run out. He made two further appearances both of which were against Sir J. Cahn's XI and both ended on a draw. He also played for the East of Scotland against the West of Scotland with the West winning by seven wickets.
He graduated MB ChB in 1938 and was appointed as House Surgeon at Worthing Hospital, Sussex and later as Medical Officer at the Royal National Hospital, Ventnor on the Isle of Wight.
Following the outbreak of war he joined the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve and was commissioned as a Surgeon Lieutenant on the 6th of March 1940. He took part in the landings on Madagascar in 1942 and in North Africa in 1943.
On the night of the 25th of January 1944, the 1,625 ton HM Landing Ship Tank 422, under the command of Lieutenant Commander Colin Lowe Broadhurst RNR, set sail with twelve other LSTs for the landing beaches at Anzio where the Allies had begun landing on the 22nd of January, in an attempt to outflank the German defenders on the Italian coast. She was carrying the Headquarters Company of the US Army's 83rd Chemical Motorized Battalion as well C and D Companies of the same unit. In addition she was transporting men of the United States 68th Coast Guard Artillery Battalion. She was also carrying fifty 50 gallon drums of gasoline, with around 80 trucks and other vehicles and a quantity of ammunition. At 1am on the 26th of January 1944, she arrived off Anzio in a gale and in weather which was deteriorating. She dropped anchor but, with mounting winds and huge waves, the anchor dragged and the vessel was blown into a known enemy minefield. At 5.02am an explosion ripped a 50 foot hole in the bottom starboard side of the hull between the main and the auxiliary engine rooms. The tank deck immediately flooded, trapping 400 men who were sleeping there. At about the same time the vehicles on deck, which were full of fuel and ammunition, began to explode, in turn igniting gasoline drums on deck. The order was given to abandon ship but due to the damage only four life rafts had survived the explosions and subsequent fire and most of the men were forced to jump into the freezing waters. LST-301 began picking up survivors but the majority had died from cold and exposure before they could be rescued. LCI 32 also tried to assist but she too hit a mine and sank with the loss of thirty of her crew. With the minesweepers USS Pilot and USS Strive and a number of other small boats and landing craft joining the rescue, around 150 men were rescued from both vessels. 454 American soldiers and 29 members of the Royal Navy crew had died during the incident.
At around 6am, Lieutenant Commander Broadhurst and the last eight of his crew abandoned the ship and she broke in two and sank at 2.30pm.
His Commander wrote that Alastair McNeil was last seen: - "Ignoring his own safety in an attempt to save the lives of other people."
He is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial 79,3.

McRuer, David Winchester Flying Officer 151768

No. 5 Lancaster Finishing School, Royal Air Force
Killed on active service on the 14th of April 1944 aged 22
David Winchester McRuer was born at Edinburgh on the 2nd of April 1922 the only son of David Stevenson McRuer and Sophie McRuer of 86, Craiglea Drive, Edinburgh. He was educated at Humberstone School, Grimsby and at George Watson's College until 1939. He went on to Edinburgh University with the intention of competing in the Civil Service Administrative Grade examinations. He was Senior President of the Historical Society, was a member of the Senior Common Room and was Convener of Debates in the Parliamentary Debating Society. He was a member of the University Air Squadron and graduated with a MA (Hons) in History.
On leaving university he enlisted in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and was posted to Canada for training. He was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on the 2nd of April 1943 and was promoted to Flying Officer on the 2nd of October 1943.
At 3.50pm on the 14th of April 1944, David McRuer and his crew took off from RAF Syerston in Lancaster Mk 1 W4103 RC-E for a daytime dual flying training exercise. Weather conditions were good with eight miles of visibility. At 4.30pm the aircraft was flying at 1,000 feet over the village of Screveton when it was in collision with Oxford Mk 1 LB415 of 1521 Flight which was piloted by Watsonian, Flight Lieutenant James Addison Hawkins. The two aircraft crashed one and a half miles to the south of Screveton airfield killing the crews of both aircraft.
The crew was: -
Flying Officer Henry Holmes Richardson DFM RCAF (Pilot instructor)
Pilot Officer Patrick William Laidler RAAF (Pupil Pilot)
Sergeant Henry Ernest Herbert (Flight Engineer)
Flying Officer Peter William Raymond Holes (Navigator)
Flying Officer David Winchester McRuer (Air Bomber)
Sergeant Glyn Robert "Bob" Aspinall (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)
Sergeant Frederick William Edwards (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant Victor Charles William Arras Gouldstone (Rear Gunner)
Aircraftman 2nd Class Sidney Stokoe (Aircrew under training)
A report into the crash, compiled by Wing Commander W.C. Gardiner of No. 5 Lancaster Finishing School, dated the 16th of April 1944 noted that: - "Aircraft using Newton's beam have always been a source of some anxiety and pilots have been warned to keep away from beam approach aircraft. It was not known that aircraft other than Newton's used the beam for practice and would be flown by pilots unfamiliar with local conditions."
A memorial to the two crews was unveiled at St Winifred's Church, Screveton in 2004 and a memorial stone and plaque was consecrated at the crash site on the 13th of November 2005.
He is commemorated on the war memorial at Humberstone School.
He is buried at Newark-on-Trent Cemetery Section F Grave 310

Melrose John Bertram Sergeant 1024217

Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Died on the 26th of June 1944 aged 31
John Bertram Melrose was born on the 8th of September 1912 the only son of William M. Melrose and Elizabeth Jane Melrose of 58, Stirling Road, Edinburgh. He was educated at Bonnington Road School, Leith and at George Watson’s College from 1921 to 1929. On leaving school he joined the staff of Messrs. Rintoul & Co, cloth merchants of Pitt Street, Edinburgh.
He enlisted in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in November 1940 and trained in the UK before serving in Iraq and the Persian Gulf. He returned to the UK to take a commission where he died at an Edinburgh Hospital from cardiac failure brought on by an illness which he had contracted while serving overseas.
He is buried at Warriston Cemetery, Edinburgh Section I Grave 897

Methven Alexander Berry Air Mechanic 326185

No. 41 Air School, South African Air Force
Died of wounds on the 14th of December 1942 aged 26
Alexander Berry "Sandy" Methven was born at Edinburgh on the 14th of April 1916 the younger son of Peter S. Methven and Jeannie Methven of Fairmilehead, Edinburgh. He was educated at George Watson’s College from 1921 where he was a member of the school Swimming Team in 1934. On leaving school he gained a PMS Certificate at the Wireless College, Walker Street in Edinburgh. In 1936 he applied to join the Palestine Police and arrived there at the height of the Arab Revolt. By the outbreak of war he was a Sergeant in the Criminal Investigation Department and he applied to return to the UK to enlist, but this was turned down. He later managed to gain his release and travelled to South Africa where he joined the South African Air Force.
He was posted to No. 41 Air School based at South End, Port Elizabeth.
On the 14th of December 1942, Sandy Methven and his crew took off in Anson Mk 1 3250 for a night training flight. During the exercise the aircraft was flying in fog when it crashed into a mountain at Amatola Rock near Alice, killing three of the crew instantly.
The crew was: -
2nd Lieutenant N. A. Chambers SAAF (Pilot)
Air Mechanic Alexander Berry Methven SAAF (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)
Leading Aircraftman Harry Burroughs (Navigator Under Training)
Leading Aircraftman Robert Plowden Weston Stevens (Navigator Under Training)
Alexander Methven was seriously injured in the accident and died of his injuries a few hours later.
He is buried at East Bank Cemetery, East London Section IIC Grave 738W

Millar Harry Walker Sergeant 1553503

106 Squadron, Royal Air Force
Killed in action on the 13th of July 1943 aged 20
Harry Walker Millar was born at Edinburgh on the 2nd of May 1923 the son of Alexander Walker Millar and Alison Manwell (nee Pringle) Millar of 5, Ettrick Grove, Edinburgh. He was educated at George Watson’s College from 1929 to 1939 after which he went to work for the National Bank of Scotland.
He volunteered for service with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve at the age of 18 and trained as an Observer in South Africa. On completion of his training he was posted to 106 Squadron.
On the night of the 12th/13th of July 1943, Bomber Command dispatched a force of 295 Lancasters for an operation on Turin. Weather conditions over the target were good, with the bulk of the bombs falling just to the north of the city centre. 106 Squadron's aircraft crossed the target in clear skies at between 15,000 and 20,000 feet and dropped their bombs at between 1.46am and 2.20am. Casualties on the ground were 792 dead with 914 injured, the highest loss of life suffered by the city during the entire war.
Harry Millar and his crew took off from RAF Syerston at 10.30pm on the 12th of July 1943 in Lancaster Mk III DV181 ZN- for the operation. Having successfully dropped their bombs the aircraft was heading home and was last heard of at 6.30am the following morning when the crew sent a message saying that the aircraft was under attack from enemy fighters. The radio transmission, which was thought to have been made over Brittany, ended abruptly.
The crew was: -
Flying Officer Colin Hayley (Pilot)
Sergeant Ernest Horton (Flight Engineer)
Flying Officer Melvin Olaf Hovinen RCAF (Navigator)
Sergeant Harry Walker Millar (Air Bomber)
Sergeant Kenneth Graham Rathbone (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)
Sergeant Robert William Ball (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant Harold Charles Hambling (Rear Gunner)
Theirs was one of thirteen aircraft which failed to return from the operation.
An investigation in 1946 by No.1 Royal Air Force Missing Research and Enquiry Unit concluded that the aircraft most probably crashed into the sea.
He is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial Panel 159

Moncrieff, Alexander Flight Lieutenant 32109

61 Squadron Royal Air Force
Killed in action on the 14th of November 1940 aged 31
Alexander Moncrieff was born at Yung Chun Chen, China on the 3rd of December 1908 the eldest son of the Reverend Hope Moncrieff, a missionary and Principal of Amoy Theological College, China, and Dorothy E. Moncrieff of 1A, Warrender Park Crescent, Edinburgh. He was educated at George Watson’ College from 1914 to 1926. On leaving school he embarked on board the TSS Hobson's Bay on the 4th of October 1927 bound for Australia, where he worked on a cattle ranch for a year before moving to Fiji for short time. He then went to New Zealand to try his hand at farming, but prospects were poor, so he decided to make a career in the air force. He trained at Christchurch, New Zealand before returning to the UK on board the liner SS Tamaroa and landed at Southampton on the 8th of June 1931. He completed his training at Uxbridge and was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on probation in the Royal Air Force on the 9th of October 1931. He was confirmed in his rank on the 9th of October 1932, was promoted to Flying Officer in 1933 and was promoted to Flight Lieutenant on the 9th of May 1936. He was posted to Egypt and later to India returned to England on board the passenger steamship SS Maloja and landed at London on the 4th of September 1936.
He was married in Hampshire in 1938 to Katherine (nee Ellershaw); at the time of his death she was living at "Ram Jan Jum", Stretton, near Oakham in Rutland.
Following the outbreak of war he was posted to No. 10 Elementary Flying Training School at Yatesbury in Wiltshire as a flying instructor, but he later requested a transfer to Bomber Command and was posted to 61 Squadron.
On the night of the 13th/14th of November 1940, Bomber Command dispatched 67 aircraft to attack Berlin, Hamburg and the enemy held airfields of Schiphol and Soesterberg in Holland. 50 of the aircraft were detailed to bomb Berlin.
In the early morning of the 14th of November 1940, Alexander Moncrieff and his crew took off from RAF Hemswell in Hampden Mk 1 X3006 QR- for the attack on Hamburg. The aircraft was carrying four 500lb bombs in the bomb bay and two 250lb bombs under the wings. The take-off run was very long and just as the aircraft had become airborne it hit a contractor’s hut with its tail wheel and a telegraph pole with its main plane, causing it to crash at 12.27am killing two of the crew and slightly injuring two more. The aircraft was partially burned out and was completely destroyed.
The crew was: -
Flight Lieutenant Alexander Moncrieff (Pilot)
Sergeant Edward Francis Ewin (Navigator)
Sergeant R. A. Aeborall (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner) (Slightly injured)
Sergeant J. G. Donnelly (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner) (Slightly injured)
Theirs was one of ten aircraft which were lost during the night, the highest number to that point in the war.
He is buried at St Chad’s Churchyard, Harpswell

Mothersill, Alan Keith Lieutenant 226306

1st Parachute Squadron, Royal Engineers
Killed in action on the 10th of March 1943 aged 21
Alan Keith Mothersill was born at Halton, Ontario on the 27th of August 1921 the elder son of the Reverend John Elmore Mothersill and Eleanor (nee Ouchtred) Mothersill of St Cuthbert's Manse, Kirkcudbright. He was educated at Kirkcudbright Academy and at George Watson's College from 1936 to 1939. He went on to Edinburgh University to study Arts but later transferred to the Engineering Department.
He enlisted in the Royal Engineers in 1941 and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant on the 15th of February 1942. He was posted to the 1st Parachute Squadron.
He was killed during heavy fighting at Cork Wood at Tamera in north east Tunisia while fighting alongside the 2nd Battalion, Parachute Regiment. He was buried there but his body was exhumed on the 8th of May 1944 and moved to its present location.
He is remembered on his parent's gravestone at Kirkcudbright Cemetery and is commemorated on the war memorials at Kirkcudbright and at Kirkcudbright Academy.
He is buried at Tabarka Ras Rajel War Cemetery Plot 1 Row A Grave 8

Mountford, Gerald Parfitt Leading Aircraftman 1055246

No. 32 Aircraft Repair Depot, Royal Air Force
Died of wounds on the 11th of May 1944 aged 21
Gerald Parfitt Mountford was born at Edinburgh the son of John Mountford, a company director, and Margaret Mountford of 53, Saughton Road, Edinburgh. He was educated at George Watson’s College from 1927 to 1937 after which he was apprenticed to the department store chain of Messrs. H. Binns Ltd of Princes Street, Edinburgh where his father was a director.
He enlisted in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve and was posted to Rhodesia where he served for three years. He was based at RAF Heany when he was mortally injured in an accident. He died at the Government Hospital, Bulawayo from multiple burns, shock and cardiac syncope.
He is buried at Athlone Cemetery, Bulawayo Grave 97

Muir, John Read Lieutenant RNVR Croix de Guerre

HM Yacht Campeador V, Royal Navy
Killed in action on the 22nd of June 1940 aged 67
John Read "Jack" Muir was born at Ayr on the 11th of November 1873 the son of the Reverend James Baird Muir, a Minister of the Church of Scotland and Vicar of St George's Church, Grenada, and of Jessie (nee Read) Muir of Grenada, where the family had lived from 1883. He was educated at George Watson's College from 1886 to 1890 when he went on to Edinburgh University to read medicine and graduated MB CM in 1894. He was a very keen sailor as a young man, both in the Caribbean and later when he returned to Scotland and owned his own boat. On leaving university he joined the Royal Navy and was commissioned as a Surgeon on the 26th of February 1900.
He was married at St Luke's Church, Grayshott in Surrey on the 3rd of December 1901 to Eleanor Mary (née Pearson); they lived at Fir Cottage, Hazel Grove, Hindhead in Surrey and had no children.
He was promoted to Staff Surgeon on the 26th of February 1908 and saw service both ashore and on board the Hospital Ship HMHS Maine where the First Surgeon wrote of him: - "I have been very highly impressed with all his professional work and consider his knowledge much above the ordinary."
He was promoted to Surgeon Commander on the 26th of February 1914 and was serving as Senior Medical Officer at the Royal Naval Hospital, Chatham on the outbreak of war. Sir James Porter wrote of his time there: - "Dr Muir gave evidence of great powers of organisation and in his unremitting attention to his duties displayed an amount of zeal and industry that is quite exceptional."
He was posted as Surgeon to the battlecruiser HMS Tiger in 1914 and saw action at the Battle of the Dogger Bank on the 24th of January 1915. He also saw action at the Battle of Jutland on the 31st of May 1916 where HMS Tiger received eighteen hits during the fighting, one of which destroyed the sick bay. John Muir quickly improvised a dressing station and began operating on the casualties at 9.30pm, finishing, exhausted, at 5.30am the following morning. HMS Tiger had suffered casualties of 24 killed with 46 wounded. Since the start of the war he had had just ten days leave and it was suggested that he spend six months in barracks but he wouldn't agree, instead he accepted the position of Chief Medical Officer to the naval station at Wei-hai-wei at Shandong in China where he was stationed when the war ended. He was Mentioned in Despatches for his actions at Jutland on the 15th of September 1916 and was awarded the Croix de Guerre on the 2nd of November 1917. He was invalided back from China, suffering from dysentery in 1919 and was posted to the Royal Naval Home at Haslar in 1920, where he performed surgery until he retired. He was promoted to Surgeon Captain on the 31st of December 1923 when a report for the Selection Committee contained the following comments: - "Officer is a skilful and capable operator, with great surgical experience. Good Administrator and I consider his promotion would be a distinct gain to the Service."
Having reached the age limit for further service, he retired from the Royal Navy on the 11th of January 1928 with the rank of Surgeon Rear Admiral.
On the 16th of June 1928 his wife filed for divorce on the grounds of his adultery and cohabitation with Anna Haserick from the 5th of November 1927, which was alleged to have taken place on board his yacht "Patience", at Oulton Broad, Suffolk. A Decree Nisi was granted on the 22nd of October 1928. He was remarried at Marylebone in 1929 to Anna "Nancy" (nee Haserick), a nursing Sister at the Royal Naval Hospital, Haslar. The couple lived at 5, Cliff Park Avenue, Paignton in South Devon.
On leaving the navy he devoted much of his time to sailing and became a trustee of the newly formed Brixham Sailing Club. He was also a member of the Royal Cruising Club, the Cruising Association and the Royal Ocean Racing Club. He took part in the Fastnet Race on board the yacht "Griffin", the smallest yacht in the race.
His friend, Cecil Hunt described him as "Short and stocky; his rugged face redeemed from sternness by his searching but twinkling eyes. He stood like a rock, yet always with that impression of resilience which suggested that the deck was under his feet. This was more than a physical stance; it was his mental and spiritual attitude."
On the outbreak of the Second World War he was determined to play a part, in spite of his age. He wrote to Cecil Hunt: - "Now may God bless you all. May He defend the right. It is evil things we are fighting against - brute force, bad faith, injustice, oppression and persecution - against them I am certain that right will prevail."
He and two others, Vernon William McAndrew and Charles Turner, volunteered for service with the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve and brought with them McAndrew's yacht Campeador V. Their application found its way onto the desk of the First Sea Lord, Winston Churchill, who accepted their offer and wrote "Promote them, age will be served." Newly commissioned as temporary Lieutenants, they recruited a retired naval officer, Commander Charles Henry Davey OBE RN, to command the vessel. The four men had a combined age of 180 years.
HMS Campeador V was commissioned for service in the Royal Navy on the 18th of September 1939 and was attached to the Auxiliary Patrol Service. John Muir was commissioned as a Sub Lieutenant on the same day and took the role of navigator. From October 1939 she patrolled the coastal waters of the South West of England. He was promoted to Lieutenant on the 17th of December 1939.
On the morning of the 22nd of June 1940, HMS Campeador set sail from Portsmouth for a patrol. At 8.50am, as they were heading towards their patrol area, they struck a magnetic mine amidships, which blew the bow off the yacht and she sank immediately. There were two survivors, who were picked up by the patrol boat HMS Wilna. The remaining four officers and sixteen members of the crew had been killed.
His wife received the following telegram: -
"Deeply regret to inform you that your husband Sub Lieut. R Muir is reported missing while on active service."
His funeral and cremation took place at Southampton on the 9th of July 1940 and his ashes were kept overnight at HM Dockyard Church. The next morning they were taken by boat to the King’s Stairs at Spithead where they were transferred to another boat which left at 9.15am. They were scattered at sea in a service which was conducted by the Chaplain of the Flotilla. His widow felt unable to attend.
He was the author of "Messing About in Boats", published by Blackie & Son in 1944 and of an autobiography, "Tears of Endurance".
He is commemorated at Southampton Old Crematorium Panel 4

Mundie, Ian Edward Andrew Captain 99479

319 Battery, 131 (City of Glasgow) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery
Killed in action on the 30th of June 1944 aged 34
Ian Edward Andrew Mundie was born on the 22nd of June 1910 the eldest son of James Mundie and Mary Mundie of Balvenie, Falkirk. He was educated at Falkirk High School and at George Watson’s College until 1928. On leaving school he was apprenticed as an accountant and joined the firm of Messrs. Mann, Judd, Jordan & Company, Chartered Accountants of Glasgow.
He was married to Phyllis Marjorie (née Moxon) of Edinburgh.
He volunteered for service in 131 (City of Glasgow) Field Regiment, Royal Artillery in the Territorial Army where he rose to the rank of Battery Sergeant Major and was mobilised for war service on the 1st of September 1939. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant on the 2nd of September 1939.
He was badly injured in 1941 when a bomber crashed into his billet in south east England.
131 Field Regiment was based at Ashington in Kent when orders came through on the afternoon of the 13th of June 1944 for the Regiment to embark for the landings in Normandy. They left for Romford at 8.30am the following morning. At 10pm on the night of the 17th of June half of the Regiment embarked at Tilbury Docks on board the USS Landing Ship Tank 528 while at the same time the other half of the regiment, including Ian Mundie, embarked on board the USS Landing Ship Tank 390.
USS Landing Ship Tank 390 landed at Courcelles on Juno Beach on the 22nd of June 1944 and Landing Ship Tank 528 landed there on the 23rd of June from where they moved inland to St Audrieux.
At 3am on the 25th of June the Regiment arrived at positions in the forward area to bombard the village of Cheux and to fire in support of an attack on the villages of Tourville and Mondrainville. On the 27th of June they moved forward to Cheux.
On the 30th of June 1944 Ian Mundie was manning a forward observation post for 319 Battery near Grainville when the position came under heavy enemy mortar fire.
All of those in the observation post were killed during the attack.
He is buried at St Manvieu War Cemetery, Plot XIV, Row D Grave 5

Munro, Ian Mackenzie Flight Lieutenant 80359

266 (Rhodesia) Squadron, Royal Air Force
Killed on active service on the 3rd of May 1943 aged 25
Ian Mackenzie Munro was born in Southern Rhodesia on the 9th of September 1918 the second son of William Mackenzie Munro, a timber merchant, and Dora Denham (nee Watson) Munro of 17, Montague Avenue, Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia. He was educated at George Watson’s College from 1933 to 1937 where he was awarded his colours for the 1st Rugby XV, the 1st Cricket XI and the Shooting VIII. On leaving school he returned to Rhodesia where he entered the tobacco industry.
Following the outbreak of war, he volunteered for service with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in 1939 and was called up in September 1940. He trained in Rhodesia and in the UK and gained the rank of Flight Sergeant before joining 266 Squadron with two other Sergeants on the 19th of July 1941. He was attached to B Flight.
On the evening of the 19th of August 1941, Ian Munro took off for a patrol with B Flight as "Blue 2". When some twenty miles off the coast, he and Flight Lieutenant McMullen, attacked a Heinkel III at very low level over the channel. After being fired on, the enemy aircraft dropped its nose and crashed into the sea at 8.47pm. On returning to base, he filed the following combat report: - "My No.1 turned sharply to starboard and I saw he was making for an aircraft which turned out to be a He 111. I made the first attack from the port quarter. I saw my bullets hit the water behind him and then apparently into the aircraft. I made three further attacks each time I saw my bullets apparently hit the aircraft. My No. 1 made several attacks and saw the aircraft go into the sea. All ammunition spent. Return fire was fairly accurate."
The two pilots were credited with the victory.
He was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on the 24th of November 1941.
On the 19th of August 1942, the Allies carried out a major raid on the town of Dieppe on the French coast. A large number of mainly Canadian troops were landed to see whether a port could be captured and held in the event of an invasion. 266 Squadron took part with 609 and 56 Squadrons to form a Wing which was ordered to fly to Le Treport and to sweep up the French coast to Le Touquet to protect naval forces during the operation.
Ian Munro took off from RAF Duxford in Typhoon Mk IA R7822 and landed at RAF West Malling to refuel before taking off again and crossing the coast at Clacton for what turned out to be an uneventful patrol.
He took off once more from RAF West Malling at 2pm in Typhoon Mk IA R7822 as "White 1" for his second sortie of the day. While patrolling over the sea at between 15,000 and 17,000 feet, about 10 miles off Le Treport, they were informed by control that a formation of enemy bombers was making for Allied shipping which was returning from Dieppe. The Wing turned to starboard and saw three Dornier 215s heading for the ships from the direction of Merville. Flight Lieutenant Roland Herbert Leslie Dawson, Pilot Officer Wilfred Reginald Smithyman and Ian Munro peeled off to attack them. Someone was heard to say over the radio "There's one gone" to which F/L Dawson replied "Yes, it's mine". Munro also attacked one which he claimed was probably destroyed. As they attacked the bombers they were bounced by three enemy FW190 fighters after which Wilfred Smithyman was not seen again. Ian Munro claimed to have damaged a FW190 during the combat. He and Roland Dawson then headed home across the Channel at very low level. During their return they encountered a Squadron of Spitfires coming the other way which, mistaking them for German aircraft, attacked them, shooting down and killing Ronald Dawson before they realised their error. Ian Munro landed safely at 3.05pm.
As a result of Roland Dawson’s death Typhoon aircraft were painted with yellow wing bands to aid in their identification.
He was promoted to Flying Officer on the 1st of October 1942.
On the 3rd of May 1943 Ian Munro took off in a Spitfire for an engine test. Sometime later the aircraft was seen near Exeter in a steep dive during which one of its main planes became detached, shortly followed by the tail plane. He was unable to escape from the aircraft and was killed when it crashed.
His brother, Pilot Officer Roich Hamish Mackenzie Munro OW, 249 Squadron Royal Air Force, was killed in action on the 12th of June 1941.
He is buried at Exeter Higher Cemetery Section ZK Grave 91

Munro, Roich Hamish Mackenzie Pilot Officer 61250

249 (Gold Coast) Squadron, Royal Air Force
Killed in action on the 12th of June 1941 aged 29
Roich Hamish Mackenzie Munro was born at Salisbury, Rhodesia on the 14th of August 1912 the eldest son of William Mackenzie Munro, a timber merchant, and Dora Denham (nee Watson) Munro of 17, Montague Avenue, Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia. He was educated at George Watson’s College from 1928 to 1930 when he entered Edinburgh University where he achieved B.Comm in 1933. On leaving university, he returned to Southern Rhodesia where he joined a firm of timber merchants, with which his father was associated.
In May 1940 he returned to the UK to enlist in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. He was commissioned as a Pilot Officer on the 20th of January 1941, with seniority from the 14th of January and was posted to 249 Squadron based at Malta.
On the 12th of June 1941, Roich Munro took off in Hurricane Mk II Z4043 to intercept an incoming reconnaissance flight by a Savoia-Marchetti 79 tri motor from 32 Gruppo, 10 Stormo, flown by Capitano Casriglioni. His was one of 18 Hurricanes scrambled, of which 9 were from his Squadron, Accompanying this enemy aircraft was a strong fighter escort of some 30 Macchi C200s. In the ensuing action which took place at between 16,000 and 17,000 feet, the SM79 was hit in the middle engine and one C200 was shot down with another damaged. In reply, the Italians shot down two Hurricanes and damaged a third. Roich Munro was killed when his aircraft was shot down and crashed into the sea.
His father received the following telegram dated the 13th of June 1941: - "Regret to inform you that Pilot Officer Roich Hamish Munro is reported missing believed to have lost his life on air operations 12 June 1941. Any further information will be communicated to you immediately."
His brother, Flight Lieutenant Ian Mackenzie Munro OW, 266 Squadron Royal Air Force, was killed on active service on the 3rd of May 1943.
He is commemorated on the Malta Memorial Panel 1 Column 1

Murray Alastair Gordon Sergeant

21 Squadron, Royal Air Force
Killed in action on the 11th of June 1940 aged 19
Alastair Gordon Murray was born at Edinburgh on the 31st of August 1920 the son of Alexander William Gordon Murray and Winifred May (nee Harrison) Murray of 13, Capstone Road, Bournemouth in Hampshire and of 54, High Street, Aberlour in Banffshire. He was educated at Daniel Stewart’s College and at George Watson’s College from 1931 to 1935. He went on to Nelson’s College with a view to entering the Civil Service. He was appointed to the Admiralty in London and later entered the Estate Duty Office for the Inland Revenue at Edinburgh.
Following the outbreak of war he volunteered for service with the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve in November 1939 where he trained as a wireless operator and rose to the rank of Sergeant.
On the 11th of June 1940, Alastair Murray and his crew took off from RAF Bodney in Blenheim Mk IV L8746 YH- to bomb enemy troop concentrations at La Mare. When the aircraft was some six kilometres to the south of Dieppe, it came under attack from enemy fighters with Alastair Murray being the first to be killed. Rear Gunner Gwyn Lewis was hit in the chest and killed moments later. The aircraft caught fire, but the pilot managed to bail out and was captured. The aircraft crashed at Offranville at 7pm.
The crew was: -
Pilot Officer Don MacDonald RCAF (Pilot) (POW No. 115 Stalag Luft 3)
Sergeant Gwyn Lewis (Observer)
Sergeant Alastair Gordon Murray (Wireless Operator/Rear Gunner)
The aircraft is thought to have been shot down by Leutnant Senoner of 3./JG30 and was one of three aircraft lost by the Squadron during the raid and one of ten lost overall.
After the war it was established that the aircraft had come down near the house of M. Duval at Chemin-des Vertur, Offranville. In September 1940 the wreckage was excavated and two bodies were recovered. They were buried by the cemetery caretaker, M. Lemoine. The bodies were exhumed on the 7th of May 1941 on behalf of the French Red Cross in an attempt to identify them. This they were unable to do due to their condition, but they were satisfied that they were those of Alastair Murray and Gwyn Lewis as the aircraft serial number had been attached to the cross under which they were buried.
He is buried at St Aubin-sur-Scie Communal Cemetery