* James Ronald Hornby was conscripted on
16/10/1942 at the age of 18. He was born 16/10/1924.
* He went to a training came at Berwick on Tweed and was assigned
to Second/Fifth Lancashire Fusiliers. His service number was 14550547
* A few days before D-Day his division was sent to Aldershot as
part of the Reinforcement Holding Unit.
* The RHU travelled to Newhaven then crossed the channel on 6
June 1944 for an overnight landing behind the first wave.
* Dad was wounded whilst on the beach. Had a severe shrapnel wound
in the leg.
After release from the field hospital he found the RHU had been
disbanded so he was sent to rejoin his comrades in the 59th Division.
* After the Falais Gap, the Lancs Fusiliers was disbanded and
he joined the Welch Fusiliers, going through France, Belgium,
Holland and into Germany.
* He continued to serve with the Royal Welch Regiment.
* He was granted home leave just before the war ended and he was
then promoted to Lance Corporal. He returned to Germany while
waiting to be drafted to Burma and the Far East Campaign. The
draft never came.
* For the next two years he assisted the Red Cross in the repatriation
of British POWs.
* In 1947, in Gevelsberg, Germany, he married a Polish Red Cross
nurse - Janina Przytocka. They came back to live in England after
dad was demobbed. They had 3 children and Janina passed away in
I know you say you cant find any records
for dad but I would ask you to bear in mind that when we applied
for the Legion DHonor Medal, all details had first to go
to the Ministry of Defence for them to verify that the applicant
did serve in France. The MOD verified that dad was there and they
informed the French government that dad was entitled to the medal.
Therefore, there must be a record somewhere of his service.
The only other thing I found was his membership
card to the Veterans Association of the 53rd (Welsh) Division.
His membership number was 28 and on the card it states 7th
R.W.F. D.Coy. Not sure if this helps you.
I hope the above information is of use. Dad
was not one for keeping many records of the time he was in the
army as it didnt bring back happy memories for him.
He died at the age of 95 years on 21 January
2020 due to complications following hip replacement surgery.