Ray Frederick Edward Gunner 1094294

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Personnel Entry

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Name Ray Frederick Edward (there is some confusion as to his middle name due to conflicting birth records)
Army number 1094294
Rank Gunner
Decorations None known beyond Service Awards.
Date of birth 26/2/1914 at Chalk Hill, Aston Tirrold, Berkshire. Mother Georgina Maria Ray - nee Hazell.
Age 30 at the time of his death.
Unit Enlisted in the Royal Artillery - probably after Dunkirk - exact date not yet known. Posted to 125th Field Regiment, Royal Artillery. Converted to 125th Anti-Tank Regiment, Royal Artillery. Part of 18th Division. Posted overseas to Malaya. Fought as Infantry in the defence of Singapore, guns having been lost when Empress of Asia was attacked and sunk. Died as a PoW of the Japanese.
Company/Battery Not yet known.
Platoon or other sub-unit
Task or role Not yet known.
Joined Brigade
Promotions None known.
Wounded Not as far as is known, other than by the privations of his life as a PoW.
Prisoner of War Yes. Captured Singapore 15/2/1942 along with the rest of the Regiment. Worked on the Burma-Siam Railway.
Died/Killed in action Died 12/9/1944 - while at sea in a Japanese transport, probably en route to Formosa - sunk by submarine, USS Growler. Commemorated on the Singapore Memorial – Column 28. He is also mentioned in the Regimental History compiled post-war.
Home address Father - James Henry Ray (1876 - 1934). Family lived in an agricultural cottage. In 1921 the family moved to a cottage on Carrimer's Farm, owned by the same landlord they worked for - Mr Cross. Frederick and all his male siblings were agricultural labourers, according to the 1939 General Register. Frederick married Emmerline Gertrude Groves (1881 - 1957), aged 20, in 1940, when he was 26. She subsequently lived at 6, Clapcot Way, Wallingford, Berks.
Source table

Considerable thanks are due to Judy Barradell-Smith for research on the Aston Tirrold War Memorial, which produced much of the information on Gunner Ray. His Tracer Card was not available on Ancestry.co.uk as presumably it had been removed from the pack on his death.