MILITARY: World War II

GILLESPIES IN WORLD WAR II

LISTING OF SOLDIERS

This page is in early development. Click on active records that are either blue or green.

WAR MEMORIALS

Click on country name to find records.

AUSTRALIA

  • Australia War Memorial
  • War Memorial, Deniliquin, NSW
  • War Memorial, Moree, New South Wales

ENGLAND

  • Brookwood Memorial, Surrey, England
  • Runnymede War Memorial, Englfield Green, Egham
  • Tower Hill Memorial, London, England

MALAYSIA

  • Singapore War Memorial

USA

Burials at Sea or No Known Grave.  Memorial location not always clear. 164 Gillespie Air Crew Missing World War II

GILLESPIE MILITARY BURIALS IN OPERATIONS THEATRE

Click on Country Name when active to find cemetery burials. Cemeteries listed in blue colour have some records available, but not all have yet been added. An going process.

AFRICA:   Eritrea; Ghana; Libya;

BELGIUM 

  • Ardennes American Cemetery, Belgium

EGYPT

El Atamein War Cemetery, Egypt

ENGLAND 

  • St Columb Major Cemetery, St Columb, Cornwall, England

FRANCE

  • Brittany American Cemetery, St James, France
  • Canadian War Cemetery, Bretteville-Sur-Laize, France
  • Epinal American Cemetery, Epinal, France
  • Lorraine American Cemetery, St Arnold, France
  • Normandy American Cemetery, Colleville-sur-Mer, France

GERMANY

  • Reichwald Forest War Cemetery, Germany

GREECE

Suda Bay War Cemetery, Crete, Greece

HOLLAND

  • Schoonselhof Cemetery, Antwerp, Wilrijk

ITALY

  • Catania War Cemetery, Sicily
  • Coriano Ridge War Cemetery, Italy
  • Syracuse War Cemetery, Sicily

Stories of the War

American horticulturist Norvell Gillespie, the garden editor of magazines such as Sunset, Better House and Gardens, and the San Francisco Chronicle, designed the now-iconic jungle camouflage print used by the U.S. Army during the war.


May 2017: Cumbria’s Museum of Military Life in Carlisle Castle have this week displayed memorabilia from an Cumbrian “Dambuster” ahead of the anniversary of the operation. Pilot Officer Alan Gillespie of 617 Squadron RAF was involved in the “Dambuster” operation and this week memorabilia has been given centre stage with items on loan from his family in New Zealand.

Born in Wetheral, Alan Gillespie was a solicitor’s clerk before the War and joined the RAF in late 1940 aged 18. His parents, Robert and Margaret Gillespie, lived at 111 Currock Road in Carlisle. His father had served with the Westmorland and Cumberland Yeomanry and 7th Battalion Border Regiment during WW1.

After completing his training, Alan joined 61 Squadron in October 1942 at RAF Syerston in Nottinghamshire. He flew with them on operations over Italy and NW Europe, for which he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal (DFM).

On 31st March 1943 he transferred to 617 Squadron based at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire only ten days after it had been formed by Wing Commander Guy Gibson. Their first mission was Operation Chastise, an attack on several dams in the Ruhr region of Germany using the newly developed ‘Bouncing Bomb’. The first Lancasters left RAF Scampton at 9.30pm on 16th May 1943. Nineteen aircraft which took off, eight did not return.

Gillespie’s aircraft never returned, hitting high tension electricity cables and crashing at Haldern in Germany. All of the crew were killed and are buried in Reichswald Forest War Cemetery in Germany.

to be continued…..

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