THE  DOVER WAR MEMORIAL  PROJECT

 

war memorial at dusk, photographed by Michelle Cooper


World War II

 

SERVICE CASUALTIES IN THE BOOK OF REMEMBRANCE

Surnames K and L

K

Keeler, H. F.
Henry Frederick Keeler, 6296444, was a Private in The Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey). He was in the 6th battalion.

He was the "second and dearly loved son" of Charles and Louisa Keeler, formerly Hood, from Ewell Minnis, Kent. In 1911 Charles Keeler was a waggoner on a farm, and he, his wife, and their first son Charles, were living at Standen Cottage, Alkham.

Henry was 22 when he died on 24 October 1942, and is commemorated on the Alamein Memorial, Egypt. Column 54  

"Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends"

In memoriam, 1944

Note: his sister, Ruth May Keeler, died on 27 August 1938

Dorothy Kathleen Keeler, Henry's sister, married George Draper on 5 March 1938 at Alkham Church. The bride's bouquet of pink carnations and white tulips was after the ceremony placed on the grave of her father.

George Draper was from Wiltshire, and during the Second World War served in the Dorsetshire Regiment, 2nd Battalion, as a Warrant Officer, Class II, 5724673. He died on 2 May 1944, and is buried in collective grave 7 D 5-13, the Kohima War Cemetery. 

"Beloved husband of Dorothy, née Keeler, and adored daddy of Pam of Ewell Minnis"

wedding, courtesy of Nigel StegglesKember, S.
Stephen Edward Kember, 1514227, was a Gunner in the 80 HAA Regiment of the Royal Artillery. He was drowned at sea when he was 24, on 7 January 1943 

He was the only son of Stephen Henry and Alice Eliza Kember, of River, Kent Mrs Kember died on 19 December 1940

The picture on the right is of Robert Kember, Stephen's uncle, marrying Nellie Ward in 1927; Stephen is the lad sitting cross-legged in the front row. He was named Stephen after his father, who is on the right in the back row. His mother is the far left. Stephen's middle name was given in memory of another uncle, Edward, twin to Robert Medjez-El-Bab memorial, courtesy Nigel Stegglesand brother of Stephen senior, who lost his life in the Great War 

Gunner Stephen Kember is commemorated on the Medjez-El-Bab Memorial, Tunisia. Face 7

with thanks to Nigel Steggles

Kennedy, E.
in memoriam, 1942, courtesy Dover ExpressEric Douglas Kennedy, 919756, was a Sergeant (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner) in the RAFVR, 114 Squadron. He was the "second beloved son" of Sergeant W C Kennedy, of the Army Educational Corps, and Mrs Kennedy, formerly of Rosenden, Guston, and of 13 Castle Street

Eric Kennedy was reported missing from operations on 27 October 1941, and later as having died. During the early afternoon of that day, six Bristol Blenheims from 114 Squadron took off from West Raynham in Norfolk to carry out an anti-shipping sortie off the Dutch Coast. A convoy was attacked, but no results were seen. The RAF aircraft then came under attack by defending Luftwaffe fighters from 4 Staffel, Jagdgeschwader 53, which shot down two of the Blenheims.

One of the Blenheims lost was V5888 which crashed into the sea soon after 3pm to the west of Texel, killing all three crewmembers. (All the crew in the other Blenheim lost were also killed.)

The crew of Blenheim V5888 were:

Sergeant James Wilson BRADLEY Pilot Aged 21
Pilot Officer Raymond Herbert BATTEN Observer Aged 25
Sergeant Eric Douglas KENNEDY Wireless Operator/Air Gunner Age not known

Sgt Bradley was the son of Henry and Nellie Bradley, of Bromley, Kent. He and P/O Batten were never found and remain 'missing'. They are commemorated on the RAF Runnymede Memorial.

Eric Kennedy is buried in Terschelling (West Terschelling) General Cemetery, Germany Grave 35

"The supreme sacrifice. Per ardua ad astra"

 

with thanks to Dean Sumner
above - in memoriam 1942
right - Blenheim preparing for a sortie, from Wikimedia Commons

Kennedy, L. R. E.
Lewis Robert Edward Kennedy was a Lieutenant (E) aboard HMS Galatea (cruiser), sunk by torpedo fired from U-557. He was 25 when he died on 15 December 1941 with 468 of his companions; only 100 survived.

Born on 13 April 1916, Lewis was the "dearly loved eldest son" of Mr. Robert Charles William and Mrs Louisa Kennedy, brother of Stewart, and the husband of Doreen Betty Kennedy, of Wye, Kent.

He is commemorated on the Plymouth Naval Memorial. Panel 44, Column 3

 

Right: Lewis Kennedy at Greenwich, below, his parents, who ran The Gate Inn on Crabble Hill, Dover

 

 

"God gives us love, someone to love he lends us"

with thanks to and photos courtesy of Alice and John Williams

note: U-557 was commanded by Ottokar Paulssen. He and his entire crew were lost the day after the sinking of the Galatea, when the U-boat was accidentally rammed by an Italian torpedo carrier.

Kerry, W. E.
W. E. Kerry

J. W. Kersley
James William Kersley Crowley was a Greaser in the Merchant Navy. He was 39 when he was killed during the enemy bombing of the hospital ship "Maid of Kent" on 21st May 1940

He is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial, London. Panel 66

"Always in our thoughts - Mother, Sister, and Jack"

Note: The Maid of Kent was one of the cross channel ferries, converted to a hospital ship. See here for more information

Killick, R.
Robert Killick, 7607542, was the elder son of Mr Alfred Wheeler Killick and the late Mrs Sarah Pritchard Killick, from 20 Salisbury Road, Dover. He was an old boy of the County (now Grammar) school, and had been a reporter on the Dover Express for six years before  joining the ROAC with another reporter, S. Wells in September 1939

He did a course in ammunition inspection and then went to France early in 1940 where he was part of the attempt to prevent enemy mechanised forces moving forward in France. He left Ostend on the cargo boat SS Abukir at 10:20pm on 27 May, one of a party of twelve from the 15th Salvage Unit bringing fifteen enemy Prisoners of War to England. Only one of the twelve survived, as the others were below decks and the ship sank in under two minutes. She had been bombed and then attacked by torpedo on 28 May 1940; in attempting to ram the U-boat her speed was too slow and she was struck amidships by the fourth torpedo

There were 200 passengers, including women and children, and it was said by a reporter at the time that they were machine-gunned while in the water. The few who survived had been in the water six hours before rescue by a British destroyer. One of these was Second Officer Wills-Rust, who had been pinned to the boat by concrete slabs, but had been released as she sank

Robert was 25 when he died, and is commemorated on the Dunkirk Memorial, France. Column 146

Kilyon, J.W.
Joseph William Kilyon, 617334, was a Flight Engineer Sergeant in the Royal Air Force, 102 Squadron. He was 22 when he died on 14 February 1943. He is buried in the Jonkerbos War Cemetery, The Netherlands. Collective Grave 8 I 6-9

The son of Joseph and Rose Minnie Kilyon, from Luton, Bedfordshire, formerly 180 Clarendon Place, he was an old St Martin's school boy, and previously worked at the Dover Engineering Works

"In loving and everlasting memory of my dear son and our brother, who failed to return from operations on Feburary 14th, 1943, from his everloving Mum and Sisters" - 1946  

Kime, B. O.
Bernard Oates Kime, 118098, was a Quartermaster Captain in the 1st battalion of the Lincolnshire Regiment. He died on 25 April 1945, when he was 41. He is buried in the Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany. 4 B 1A

He was the husband of Ethel Kime, from Dover 

King, D. J.
D King, gravestone, courtesy Brian RowlandDouglas John King, 1883613, was a Sapper in the 224 Field Company of the Royal Engineers. He was accidentally killed on Friday, 30 August 1940, when he was 23

He was buried with full military honours on 4 September in Liskeard (Lanchard) Cemetery, Cornwall. 'Extension', Section C, Grave 99. The cortege had left at a slow pace from The Cottage Hospital Mortuary, with a firing party from the Kings Company preceding. Eight fellow soldiers were bearers. He had joined the army only seven months before as a volunteer, and was said to have been very popular amongst his section

Well-known in Dover for his football as left-back for St Barts' Old Boys' team, he was the "dearly loved only son" of Mr and Mrs T G King, from 9 Douglas Road, Dover, and the "cherished brother" of Mrs Menpes, from 40 Northlands Avenue, Orpington, Kent. They attended the funeral, and other mourners included an officer from the soldiers' company and six NCOs. Floral tributes included those from his "broken-hearted" mum and dad, his brother and sister, and his "broken-hearted" sweetheart

"Ever and always in our thoughts"
 
1941 "Dearly loved and deeply mourned by his Mum and Dad"
  "At the going down of the sun, and in the morning, we will remember him" Nellie and George
  "Loved, remembered, longed for always" Lily

The words at the bottom of his headstone read: "Sacrificed to keep men free, Priceless treasures went with thee"

King, E. G.
Edward George (Ted) King, 634371, was an Air Gunner Sergeant in the 149 Squadron of the RAF. He was killed while on an operational flight on 4 April 1943. He is buried in Esbjerg (Fourfelt) Cemetery, Denmark. A III 7 9

He was the "dear son" of Mr and Mrs B King, from 47 Lime Kiln Street, Dover, and had sisters and brothers

"Never forgotten"

S Kingsmill stone by Jean MarshKingsmill, S. G.
Stanley George Kingsmill, 1394618, was an Air Bomber Sergeant in the RAFVR. He died during a night training exercise on 28 April 1944, aged 20. He and the other crew took off from RAF Westcott in Buckinghamshire in a Vickers Wellington MkX serial  JA456, coded OP - M, from 11 Operational Training Unit.

They were cruising at 15,000 feet above the Bristol Channel when the port engine failed. The pilot turned towards the Pembrokeshire Coast, searching for an airfield on which to land. They arrived over Haverfordwest airfield at 23.45, but owing to unfamiliarity with the airfield and lack of power as only one engine was running, the Wellington touched down too far along the runway and bounced back into the air before crashing into a ravine beyond the airfield boundary. The Wellington burst into flames, and four of the six crew members perished.

The beloved only son of George Albert and Maud Mary Kingsmill, of Dover, Stanley Kingsmill had only recently returned from training in Canada. Before he joined the RAF he was a sergeant in the local Air Training Corps and connected with the local ARP. He was buried from the family home at 232 London Road in St Mary's, Dover, section YGx, Grave 16, on 4 May 1944. Amongst the mourners were his parents, grandparents and his fiancee, Miss T Kennedy. Men from the RAF, ATC, the Fire Guard and the Ambulance Department were also at the graveside.

The crew were:

Flight Sergeant Trevor Lloyd Gardiner RNZAF Captain (pilot) aged 25
Sergeant Alister Henry Scott RNZAF Navigator aged 27 (survived injured)
Sgt Stanley George Kingsmill RAFVR Bomb Aimer aged 20
Flight Sergeant Marcel Louis Quadry (French) Wireless Operator/Air Gunner age unknown
Sergeant N L Taylor RNZAF Wireless Operator/Air Gunner age unknown (survived injured)
Sergeant Leonard Ernest Laird RNZAF Air Gunner aged 24

After recovering from his injuries, Sgt Scott went on to serve with 75 'New Zealand' Squadron, but sadly on 4th November 1944, he lost his life as a Flight Sergeant when his Avro Lancaster failed to return from a raid on Solingen in Germany. He is buried at the Rheinberg War Cemetery.

Notes:
Flt/Sgt Gardiner was the son of Albert Gardiner and Mabel Gardiner (nee Maugham); husband of Dorothy Patricia Gardiner, of Westown, New Plymouth. Taranaki, New Zealand. He is buried in Haverfordwest Cemetery
Sgt Scott was the son of A. W. Scott and Ella Scott, of Glenorchy, Otago, New Zealand.
Flt/Sgt Quadry was repatriated to France.
Sgt Laird was the son of Ronald James Laird and Dora Laird (nee Kydd); husband of Joan Laird of Palmerston North, Wellington, New Zealand. He is buried in Haverfordwest Cemetery.

RAF information with thanks to Dean Sumner

David Kirton, sent by Dean SumnerBattle of Britain clasp, courtesy Dean SumnerKirton, D. I.
David Ian Kirton, 550500, was born at 302 London Road, Dover, on 29 June 1919. He was educated at St James' school, and at the County (now Grammar) School for Boys. He left there in 1935 and joined the RAF as a Boy Entrant. He was posted to the RAF School of Photography, and later accepted for Pilot Training, which he began in June 1939

With his training completed he was in April 1940 posted to No 501 Squadron, flying Hawker Hurricanes. The next month he was sent to No 65 Squadron at RAF Hornchurch, to fly Supermarine Spitfires. He survived the early skirmishes with the Luftwaffe during the Battle of Britain, but on 8 August 1940 he was in combat with Messerschmitt Me109's and at about 11.40 was shot down in Spitfire K9911 over Manston, and crashed and was killed. His body was recovered, and he is buried in St James Cemetery, Dover. The annoucnement of the death of David Kirton, "dearly loved younger son" ... grandson of Mrs HC Gibbs 20 Marine Parade, courtesy Dover Expressfuneral was on Tuesday 13 August, with the first part of the service being held at St James Church. Sergeant Pilot Kirton was buried with full Royal Air Force honours, with the bearers, the firing party, and the bugler all coming from the RAF. Many people attended, and there were numerous floral tributes. Section KV, Grave 22

He was the son of James Hughes Kirton , who died at the end of the Great War, and Violet Kathleen Kirton, in West Hampstead, London. Mr Kirton never saw his son. Mrs Kirton  remarried in 1942, and, as Mrs Eric Calton, dedicated a bench on Dover Sea Front to David and to his brother James, below, who also died

St Mary's schoolchildren, from the collection of Ken Stoker David at his first school

David Kirton, from the collection of Ken Stoker

He is the fair-haired lad on the left


LAC Kirton, in a Lysander, collection of Ken Stoker LAC Kirton in one of No 2 Squadron's Lysanders at Hawkinge airfield in 1939

The picture pre-dates his pilot training, and was taken while he was still ground crew, with the rank of Leading Aircraftman

David Kirton's gravestone may be seen here; he is buried next to his father

New housing estates have been constructed at Hawkinge. This was the site of the closest RAF airfield to occupied France, extensively used during the Battle of Britain. One of the estate roads is named in David Kirton's memory

"He gave his life that we might live. RIP - Mother and Jim"

Battle of Britain clasp, courtesy Dean SumnerNote: the Luftwaffe pilot who shot down David Kirton may have been Oberleutnant Willy Fronhoefer, of Jagdgeschwader 26. He was himself later shot down, but survived and became a POW on 31 August 1940

with thanks to Ken Stoker for images and information from his collection
with thanks to Dean Sumner, Shoreham Aircraft Museum, Sevenoaks, for the image of David Kirton as an adult and for information about his RAF service

Another of The Few, Peter Kennard-Davis, crashed and was fatally wounded nearby on the same day that David Kirton was killed. 

Kirton, J. H.
Wellington bomber, image in public domain, source Wikimedia commonsJames Hughes Kirton, 41771, was promoted to Squadron Leader, Pilot, in the RAF around May 1942. He was Mentioned in Dispatches several times

On 27 January 1944, at 18.55, he took off from Desborough on a cross-country training flight in Wellington HZ484. For reasons unknown the plane crashed at 22.45 near Manor House, Arthingsworth, about five miles west of Kettering

James was 27, and is buried at Desborough, Cemetery, Northamptonshire. Section H, Grave1. Lost with him were:

Flying Officer Donald Edward Blunt Navigator aged 23
Flying Officer Frederick Walter Jones Bomb aimer aged 21
Sergeant John Orr Wireless Operator/Air -gunner aged 21
Sergeant Arthur Leslie True-Love Butler Air-gunner aged 20
Sergeant Joseph Donald Kennedy Air-gunner aged 19

three graves, by Simon ChambersJust inside the entrance to Desborough Cemetery is this plot, below. James Kirton's grave is on the right. At the foot of his headstone are the words "His life a beautiful memory, his absence a silent grief"

On the left is the grave of his Navigator, Donald Blunt. At the foot of his headstone are the words, "At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember him"

Two crews, a total of 16 young men, died that night from RAF Desborough in separate accidents. Over 121 RAF personnel died that same day

Mrs Galton, with Air Chief Marshall Sir Peter Harding, from the colleciton of Ken Stoker, courtesy Express

James Kirton was the son of James Hughes and Violet Kathleen Kirton, and the grandson of Mrs Harriet Catherine Gibbs from 13 or 7  East Cliff. He was married to Frances née Panter, from Barnt Green, Worcestershire, and they had two children, their daughter Anthea being born after her father's death. Like his brother, David, above, James also attended the County (now Grammar) School, where they were said to be popular with staff and pupils alike. James also played rugby for Dover

The picture is of their mother, who became Mrs Calton, aged 96, meeting Air Chief Marshall Sir Peter Harding, at a reception after the annual service at Westminster Abbey to remember those lost in war. She is quoted as saying, "It's a wonderful occasion. It's really special to me. Feelings come out that just can't be described, feelings that only a grieving mother can understand"

A photograph of James Kirton on the the promenade at Dover is here. "In Remembrance"

with thanks to Ken Stoker
with thanks to Dean Sumner, Shoreham Aircraft Museum, Sevenoaks
with thanks to Ron Kennedy

Kisbee, W. J. E. 
William James Edward Kisbee, C/X 20616A, was an Acting Leading Seaman on HMS Rosabell, in the Royal Naval Reserve. He was a holder of the Royal Humane Society's Certificate, and was formerly of the Pilot Cutters, Dover. He was 28 when he died on 11 December 1941. He is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial Panel 49.3

He was the eldest son of Edward and Clara Elizabeth Kisbee, from 44 Beaufoy Terrace, St Radigunds, Dover, and brother to Charlie, Percy, and Flo

"Happy and smiling, always content, Loved and respected wherever he went;
Always thoughtful, willing, and kind, A beautiful memory left behind"  1942

"Love's last gift; Remembrance"


L

Laker, J.W.
John William Laker, C/J 103942, was a Chief Petty Officer aboard HM Submarine Snapper. He was 34 when he died on 12 February 1941, having been reported missing. He is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial. Panel 41.2

He was an old boy of St Martin's school, and the son of Anne Ellen Laker, from River, Kent, and formerly of 23 Kitchener Road, and her late husband William Charles Laker  

Langham, L. J.
Louis John Langham, 1337179, was a Sergeant (Navigation/Bomb Aimer) in 102 Squadron of the RAFVR. He was reported as missing and then killed on 26 February 1943, when he was 23. He is buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery, Germany. Collective Grave 4 C 2-20

He was an old County (now Grammar) school boy, and the son of Harry Louis and Emma Langham, and  husband of Bettina Jewel Langham (nee Coppins) from Dover  

Law, R. T. E.
Reginald Thomas E (Felton?) Law, C/K 17057, was a Petty Officer Stoker aboard HMS Veteran. He was 48 when he died on 26 September 1942, and is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial. Panel 61.1

He was the husband of Amy Louisa Rolfe Law, from Deal, Kent

Lawrence, L. A.
Leonard Albert Lawrence, 1395618, was a Flight Sergeant in 179 Squadron of the RAFVR. A former pupil of the County (now Grammar) School, he was reported as missing during operations and later as having died on 4 November 1944, aged 21. He is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial. Panel 219, and his effects were sent to his mother.

He was the only son of the late Albert and Mrs Edith Florence Victoria Lawrence, formerly Laslett, of 19 Monins Road. The couple had married on 22 June 1908 in Holy Trinity church, Dover. Miss Laslett, who was the sister of  William Samuel Barrett Laslett, then lived at 23 Oxenden Street, and her fiancé at 13 Limekiln Street. He was employed as a fireman on the SECR; he had been born in Canterbury to Mr and Mrs Frank John Lawrence.

In 1911 the family were living at 11 Winchelsea Terrace, Dover, with two daughters, Florence Edith and Vera Lilian. Mr Lawrence, then 27, was working as a locomotive engine fireman. He died on Saturday 8 February 1941 at the Casualty Hospital, Dover, aged 57.

1945 In Memoriam - In fondest memories of my dear son and brother, who was reported missing October 14th 1944 and now presumed killed. CC RAF. From Mum and Sisters.

detail from panel at Runnymede by Dean Sumner

Lewis, A. W. G.
Alan William George Lewis, 179221, was an Assistant Steward, Merchant Navy (as Naval Auxiliary Personnel). He was aboard the HMS Dasher when he died on 27 March 1943, at the age of 21. He is commemorated on the Liverpool Naval Memorial. Panel 10, Column 2

He was the "dearly loved youngest son" of Mrs Lewis and the late Albert Lewis, of 3 Cranbrook Villas, London Road, Dover. "A cruel and bitter blow"

Lilley, W.
William Alfred Mons Denis Lilley, C/JX 150304, was a Leading Seaman aboard HMS Southampton. He was reported missing, and later as having died, on 11 January 1941, when he was 25. He is commemorated on the Chatham Naval Memorial. Panel 41.3

His wife was Lillian Anne Lilley, formerly Martin, from Feltham, Middlesex. The couple had married on 28 December 1938 at St Bartholomew's, Dover. Miss Martin had been living at 53 Devonshire Road.

William was the "dearly loved" and only son of Mrs Constance Woodgate and the late Mr William John Lilley RASC (late of Dover)

"He died that we might live" 

in memoriam, 1943, courtesy Dover Express
In Memoriam
Just a memory, fond and true,
From one who thought the world
of you;
You live with me in memory still,
Not just today, but always will

In treasured memory of my dear husband, from his loving wife Lil and baby son Ray
Memories are treasures no one
can steal

In ever loving memory, from his loving Mum, Dad and sisters

Thoughts return to scenes long passed;
Time rolls on but memory lasts"

In loving memory of my dear son-in-law, Mum and family

 

In memoriam, 1942, 1943

Littlehales, R.
Reginald Littlehales, 1268196, was a Sergeant (Air Gunner) in the RAFVR, 625 Squadron. He was 33 when he was reported missing, and later as having died on 3 November 1943, and is buried in the Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Germany. 6 G 6

He was the son of Joseph and Annie Littlehales, and the husband of Kathleen Littlehales, of Lydden, Kent. Mrs Littlehales' address at the time of her husband's death was 29 Old Park Road, though she was then temporarily staying at Littleworth House, Hednesford, Staffordshire

Lohan, G. H.
Gerard Harris Lohan, 94156, was a Captain in the South Staffordshire Regiment, attached to the 8th battalion of the Durham Light Infantry. He was 32 (24?) when he died on 17 July 1943, and is buried in the Catania War Cemetery, Sicily. II D 28

He was the second son of Major Matthew Gordon Lohan and Queenie Lohan, and the husband of Margaret Mary Lohan, from  Pittville, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire. 1944 - "In treasured remembrance of our beloved son"

Low, J.
James Low, 2751603, was a Corporal in the 1st battalion of the Black Watch (Royal Highlanders). he died on 12 June 1940, aged 36. He is buried in the Veules-les-Roses Communal Cemetery, France. Row 1, Grave 3

He was the son of James and Jean Low, and the husband of Louisa Low, from Dover

Lown, N. E.
Norman Edmund Lown, C/JX 140413, was a Petty Officer aboard HMS Bullen. He died on 6 December 1944, aged 27. He is buried in the Hillswick (St Magnus) Cemetery, Shetland. Grave 205

He was the son of Edmund Lown, and of Maud Lown (nee Coleman), and the husband of Lilian Rose Lown, of Dover. His brother-in-law Alan Smith also died

Lush, C. E.
Cyril Edward Lush, 1869296, was a Sapper in 35 Fortress Company of the Royal Engineers. He died as a POW on 28 April 1944, when he was 28. He is buried in the Chungkai War Cemetery, Thailand. 2 B 6

He was the son of Allen Lush and Mary Jane Lush, from Dover

1949 - "In loving memory of a dear son and brother ... "also Frederick G Lush who died 22 August 1922" - from their loving Mum, Dad, and Brothers



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