Special Service Brigade

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BECKETT, John Arthur

Lance Sergeant John Beckett, Brigade Signals 2 Section, died in a road traffic collision along with two others.
 
All three men died as a result of a truck crash in Dundee. The truck in which they were travelling came down the hill on Law Street, crashed through railings and hit a tree in Dudhope Park. Signalman Arthur Brian Burns died at the scene, Sergeant John Arthur Beckett and Lance Corporal Andrew Gray Paterson died later that evening at Dundee Royal Infirmary. Four other men were injured and detained in hospital.
 

BENNETT, Basil H.

Captain Bennett, a veteran of the First World War, was Adminsitrative Officer of the Special Service Brigade HQ.
 
His death was announced in Commando Association Newsletter 43 of Sept. 1966 where Major General Sir Robert Laycock, K.C.M.G., C.B., D.S.O., wrote this appreciation about him:

BURNS, Arthur Brian

Signalman Arthur Burns, Brigade Signals 2 Section, died in a road traffic collision along with two others.
 
All three men died as a result of a truck crash in Dundee. The truck in which they were travelling came down the hill on Law Street, crashed through railings and hit a tree in Dudhope Park. Signalman Arthur Brian Burns died at the scene, Sergeant John Arthur Beckett and Lance Corporal Andrew Gray Paterson died later that evening at Dundee Royal Infirmary. Four other men were injured and detained in hospital. [1]
 

PATERSON, Andrew Gray

Lance Corporal Andrew Paterson, Brigade Signals 2 Section, died in a road traffic collision along with two others.
 
All three men died as a result of a truck crash in Dundee. The truck in which they were travelling came down the hill on Law Street, crashed through railings and hit a tree in Dudhope Park. Signalman Arthur Brian Burns died at the scene, Sergeant John Arthur Beckett and Lance Corporal Andrew Gray Paterson died later that evening at Dundee Royal Infirmary. Four other men were injured and detained in hospital.
 

PIRIE, James

Captain James Pirie, Royal Engineers, was attached to 2 Special Service Brigade at the time of his death.
 
Notes
During this period the Brigade were involved in operations against the German garrison on the Island of Brac.
 

PRITCHARD, William Henry

Captain William Pritchard M.C. died during the raid at St Nazaire. He was one of the commando contingent on ML 457 [1][2].
He and fellow Royal Engineer, Captain Bob Montgomery [more...] had been instrumental in the initial planning and training of the demolition teams [3]

STURGES, Robert Grice

Robert Grice Sturges
Major General Robert Grice Sturges, a veteran of WW1, commanded the Special Service Group from August 1943.
  • 5 July 1940 (Colonel) (Royal Marines) Mentioned in Despatches in recognition of his service as Commander of 'Force Sturges' to establish a base on Iceland [1].
  • 19 May 1942 (Acting Major General) (Royal Marines) appointed a Royal Marine Aide-de-Camp to The King [2].
  • December 1942 Joint Commander of  British Forces in Madagascar (121 Force)

THOMAS, D.C.

Lt. DC 'Tommy' Thomas MC
Lieut. Thomas was from Maclear in the Transkei, South Africa. The South African Legion website records him as attached to the RM Commandos, 4th Special Service Bde., during the allied landings at Normandy, and that he recieved shrapnel wounds to his leg.
 
He was awarded the MC for "gallant and distinguished services in operations in North West Europe." (Source: London Gazettes Supp. 36846, page 5809, and Supp. 36895, page 417.)
 

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