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Interesting history with pictures and documents

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We’re getting translated but I thought I’d share for other insights? Please look as the daughter is interested in her father’s adventures in North Africa maybe there’s some idea how he got into French hands?

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Posted (edited)

Please look as the daughter is interested in her father’s adventures in North Africa maybe there’s some idea how he got into French hands?

 

1) It's been @ 20 years since I taught myself to read Italian (not so far from French), so I'll use google translate to help. What you're looking at here is the Italian equivalent to a DD-214 record of military service, education and whatnot.

 

2) To answer the first question, this entry (which technically is the 2nd page of his military history) says

Catturato prigioniero dei francesi nel Sahara Libico 4 Genn 43

(Captured prisoner of the French in the Libyan Sahara 04 January 1943). Tripoli fell to the Allies on 22 January 1943 (map here https://nzhistory.govt.nz/media/photo/libya-campaign-map ) so his unit was rolled up by the French a few weeks prior. With more work, I could probably tell you where/how.

 

3) Top of that same page, there's a reference to the MR/685th - tempting to think that means the 685th Motorized Regiment but there was no such unit (that I could find - see OOB https://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/NHC/NewPDFs/Italy/ITL%20Order%20of%20Battle%201942-09.pdf ).

 

Per the first page (https://www.worldmilitariaforum.com/forums/uploads/monthly_2020_05/3A17D2A3-2EA0-44BC-958F-6FAE0A140489.jpeg.b4b3281470587e153b5e088d74d7e38e.jpeg ) it mentions that he volunteered on 03 January 1939 and was transferred to the 4th Artillery Regiment at Laurane (?) on 05 April 1939. He was made a radio telegraph operator on 25 March 1939, got promoted to Corporal and while in Libya, Sergeant.

 

Note - the 1st photo shows him leaning on what looks like a Dodge, so that'd be part of his post-war service. Makes sense, since a Sergeant taken PoW in 1943 was unlikely to have any surviving pics of his pre-capture service.

 

4) Was a PoW from 1943 to 1946, with post-war service in the Italian Army. That last photo of him shows a Staghound Armored Car (really distinctive, also post-war Italian usage  - see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T17E1_Staghound ), so more work would reveal what unit.

Edited by Story

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For what it's worth, the 1st Free French Brigade had been part of the Commonwealth Order of Battle, fighting Rommel's DAK.

 

Bir Hakim was their moment of glory 

https://www.nationalww2museum.org/war/articles/free-french-bir-hacheim-1942

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Duh.

Just noticed that the 6th photo has him standing under the Somalia Security Command HQ sign.

 

Per this page (https://www.worldmilitariaforum.com/forums/uploads/monthly_2020_05/82BC0CF3-2E55-4C94-AA81-518516813518.jpeg.ba4a9561c573681526f95a74cc914d41.jpeg ) he was assigned to the 2nd Company, motorized Carabinieri on 08 Feb 1950 which embarked on Napoli on 10 March 1950 for Somalia. He'd been promoted to Sergeant Major on 01 March 1950.

 

Let's go back to that Staghound.

 

Per Zaloga (https://books.google.com/books?id=A6uHCwAAQBAJ&pg=PT74&lpg=PT74&dq=staghound+italy+somalia&source=bl&ots=6irA3g6JEJ&sig=ACfU3U3FH9rHqFb9JSc9yCwyS5DRSwC4_A&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjxlt2Vz6LqAhU7oHIEHX8gB4UQ6AEwAHoECAwQAQ#v=onepage&q=staghound italy somalia&f=false ), "When Somalia became a United Nations trust territory under Italian administration in 1950, the Italian army dispatched a number of armored-car units for patrol duty with the Security Corps."

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