A document relating to French commandos who died

Translation of first page of letter dated 24th May 1945 (subsequent pages missing).

Original provided to the CVA as an image [VIEW].

Marine Nationale
Naval Forces in Great Britain,
Base of 1st Batallion Fusiliers Marins Commando
No. 124 FMC


24th May 1945

Enseigne de Vaisseau 1st Classe (UK equiv. Sub-Lieutenant) J. MAZEAS

Responsible for the Base of the 1st BFM Commandos


The head of the Central Service of the Etat Civil (Register of Births, Marriages and Deaths)
3 Avenue Octave Creard, PARIS
SUBJECT: Losses of the 1st BFM Commando

ATTACHMENTS:                My notes No.121 and 122 FMC of 24th May 1945

I have the honour to send to you the attached notes, cited in reference to the deaths of our men in the course of operations. I take advantage of this opportunity to send to you below the list of the losses and disappearances that we have had since the creation of our unit, the main reason being to safeguard the interests of our men, killed or disappeared.


MOUTAILLER Serge, Second-Maitre canonnier (Petty Officer gunner) Mle 5822 FN41
Disappeared in the course of the raid on Dieppe on 18th August 1942, no news since that date.

BELLAMY Robert, Quartier-Maitre 2nd class fusilier (Leading Rating rifleman) Mle 10033 FN40
DIGNAC André, Matelot Brevete fusilier (Able Seaman rifleman) Mle 6286 FN41
Disappeared on 24th December 1943 in the course of a raid on SARK(Channel Islands), grievously injured by an anti-personnel mine, not possible to evacuate, presumed killed.

WALLERAND Pierre, Maitre fusilier (Petty Officer rifleman) Mle 267 FN43.
Diappeared in the course of a raid on GRAVELINE on 24th-25th December 1943.  Presumed drowned and buried at GRAVELINE

TREPEL Charles, Mle 54454 Lt. de Vaisseau (Lieutenant) detached from the Army to FNGB
HAGNERE Jean, Mle 10425 FN43 Second-Maitre fusilier (Petty Officer rifleman)
GUY Rene, Mle 10320 FN40 Quartier-Maitre 2nd classe fusilier (Leading Rating rifleman)
RIVIERE Jacquelin, Mle 10834 FN40 Quartier-Maitre 2nd classe fusilier (Leading Rating rifleman)
DEVILLERS Fernand, Mle 540 FN43 Quartier-Maitre 2nd classe fusilier (Leading Rating rifleman)
CABANELLA Roger, //339 FN43 Matelot Brevete (Leading Seaman)
Team which disappeared in its entirety during the night of 27th-28th February 1944 on the coast of Holland, without leaving any trace.  Research by the British authorities is without result up to the present time.
GICQUEL Georges, Mle 4822 FN40 Matelot sans Specialite (Ordinary Seaman)
Disappeared in the course of a patrol on 24th July 1944 at Breville (Calvados)

This letter obviously represents the state of knowledge of the disappearance of these men at the time.

The present view of these disappearances is as follows:

MOUTAILLER Serge.- (name is also spelt MOUTAILLIER in some sources)
The circumstances of his death are unclear.  It is believed he was summarily executed on being taken prisoner on 19th August 1942 at Yellow 1 beach (Berneval) on account of his wearing French insignia (“bachi” naval cap, “France” shoulder patches, etc.)

Information in letter is correct.  Both were buried on Sark (DIGNAC later exhumed and reburied in France)

Information is correct.  Drowned whilst attempting to swim out to a MTB after completing mission.

Their disappearance has never been fully elucidated.  May have been executed on being taken prisoner.

Taken prisoner, tortured by the Germans, and  left hanging from a tree.

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