BROWN, James

Known as: 
Unit / Base: 
5 Commando
Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders
P.O.W. number: 
Honours & Awards: 
Sunday, March 13, 1921
Died : 
Sunday, December 5, 1993
Private James Brown was awarded the Military Medal for gallant and distinguished services in the field relating to his successful escape in October 1943 after being captured during Operation Chariot, the raid at St Nazaire 28 March 1942. He was one of the Commando contingent on board HMS Campbeltown.
He escaped from Stalag 344 (V111b) at Lamsdorf Poland to Switzerland with two others, LSgt. Dick Bradley and LSgt. Alf Searson, both from No.2 Commando. They were then interned. All 3 were later awarded the Military Medal. An account by LSgt Bradley MM is on the website of the BBC WW2 People's War. [Read the full account here]
On return to Britain at the end of the war, Jim Brown spent a year in the Auchengeoch pit, near Glasgow, with a grant from the Commandos which he made a point of paying back. This experience gave him entrance to the mining engineering course at the Royal Technical College in Glasgow, and then to Glasgow University. He joined Royal Dutch Shell, and served Shell in Trinidad, Turkey, Kuwait and Venezuela. Later he became a respected Professor of Petroleum Engineering at Heriot-Watt University.
The death of Professor Jim Brown was announced in Commando Newsletter 98 issued March 1994.
London Gazette 37194, page 3858
Casualty Lists / National Archives file WO417/43.
Prisoners of War 1715-1945 / National Archives file WO392/1.
POW - Escape via Switzerland - report / National Archives file WO208/4243.
German Record Cards of British PoW's / National Archives file WO416/49/196.
St Nazaire Society website.
Storming St. Nazaire, author James Dorrian.

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