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  • Writer's pictureSi Biggs

First Royal Marines Killed in Action in WW2

In 1939 within days of the outbreak of war two Royal Marines had died ashore;

Sergeant (Pens) Ebenezer Luff, PO/ 15068, was killed in a road accident on the 6th September, and Marine Sydney Ritchie, PO/X 1715, died om teh 7th, both from RM Barracks, Eastney.

It was only 14 days into the war that the first Royal Marines were killed in action, 24 Royal Marines including 2 from the Band were lost when HMS Courageous was sunk by two torpedoes fired by U-29.

Location of HMS Courageous when she sunk with the loss of 519 of her crew including 24 Royal Marines on 17th September 1939 []

She capsized and sank in 20 minutes with the loss of 519 of her crew, the first Royal Navy ship to be lost in World War 2.

Royal Marines Roll of Honour and Graves Data base []

HMS Courageous Royal Marines Missing Presumed Dead;

BERRY, Harry, Marine, PLY/X 1354:

COOMBE, Frederick, Marine, PLY/ 18139:

CORNISH, George E, Marine, PLY/X 15992:

ETRIDGE, Leslie S, Musician, RMB/X 326:

FLETCHER, Austin R, Marine, PLY/X 708:

GRAY, Arthur S, Marine, PLY/ 22469:

GREENLEAF, Howard H S, Marine, PLY/X 649:

HEATH, James W, Colour Sergeant, PLY/ 21057:

HOWARD, James, Marine, PLY/19851:

HUMBLE, Frederick, Musician, RMB/ 2914:

JAMES, Christopher, Marine, PLY/ 20584:

KIBBLE, Ernest D G, Marine, PLY/X 481:

MAKINGS, Frank, MPK, Marine, PLY/ 18561:

PEACH, Ernest, Marine, PLY/ 17446:

SIMPSON, Robert, Marine, PLY/X 2010:

SMITH, James A J, Marine, PLY/ 21466:

STUBBS, Harold, Marine, PLY/X 1363:

TARGETT, Stanley L G, Marine, PLY/X 1214:

TILBROOK, John, Marine, PLY/X 1126:

WHEELER, Charles, Marine, PLY/ 16387:

WILLIAMS, Caradoc G, Marine, PLY/X 1419:

WILSON, Donald, Marine, PLY/ 15433:

WINSER, Samuel A G, Marine, PLY/15608:

YATES, Henry R, Marine, PLY/ 20432.

Are you a relative? Do you know a relative I would very much like to add personal pictures and information to these and other Royal Marine casualties as I continue to record our fallen here Royal Marines Roll of Honour and Graves Data base

Related Royal Marines 'Dits'

  1. HMS Courageous - First British warship to be sunk in WW 2 - 23 Royal Marines lost

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