CUMMINGS, John

Rank: 
Lieutenant
Unit/Base: 
3 Commando
Regiment/Corps: 
King's Own Royal Regiment
Service: 
Army
Number: 
77341
P.O.W. number: 
4232
Lieutenant John Cummings was reported missing 13 September 1943 after being seriously wounded and taken prisoner of war during operations in Italy. After recovery from his wounds he was repatriated to the UK the following year.
Extract from Commando Association newsletter 82
Comrade receives a very hospitable welcome from his former German captors.
When leading a No. 3 Commando Patrol into ltaly, just before the invasion, John Cummings was captured, having been shot through both lungs and the left shoulder. Though at the time the Germans were evacuating Italy they treated him with efficiency and kindness.
After flying him to Munich, he was taken first to the P.O.W. Hospital at Freising whilst his lungs healed and then to a German Hospital, where they operated on his arm. He was then sent back to England within a year of being captured.
In September 1985 he and his wife were invited to be Guests of Honour at the Re-union of the 29th Panzer Grenadier Division (the Falcons) in Kessel, Germany - who had captured him. On arrival at Frankfurt, they were also asked to be Guests of Honour at the Re-union of the 2nd Panzer Grenadier Division in Marburg.
At each of them they received a tremendous welcome and were the only foreign guests. They presented the book "Commandos" by Messenger to the Commanding General. They received a letter from the German Ambassador in which he expresses his pleasure and has invited them to a ceremony at the German Embassy. 
John Cummings is probably best remembered for being KO'd  by Trooper Dennis in the final of the Gibraltar Heavyweight Championship by those officers who mistakenly loyally backed him !
 
Sources
Casualty Lists / National Archives files WO417/5 and WO417/9.
Prisoners of War / National Archives file WO392/1.
CA Newsletter 82 published March 1986.
 

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