Robert Jones was born, I believe, on the 9th July 1911, according to the St. Deniol’s Parish Registers, and baptised on the 10th August 1911, the son of Joseph & Jane Ellen Jones, Buckley, Labourer. They married on the 29th April 1911 at the Emmanual Parish Church, Buckley:-
Joseph Edward JONES, 23, Bachelor, Bricklayer, Mount Terrace, Lane End, Joseph Edward JONES, Labourer & Jane Ellen CROFTS, 20, Spinster, Daisy Hill, Bistre, Robert CROFTS, Collier. (After Banns) – Witnesses :- Walter CROFTS & Emma CROFTS.
Joseph Edward, Junior, was on the 1911 census, which was taken on the 2nd April, living with his parents, Joseph Edward & Ann Jones and brother James at Ewloe, Hawarden, Flintshire. Joseph Edward Senior, 69, a Labourer who had been born in Hawarden, and Ann Jane, born Hale, Liverpool, tell us that they had been born 39 years and 9 children had been born to them, sadly 3 had died. James, 26 and single was a bricklayer and Joseph Edward, Junior, 23 also single was a Bricklayer Improver, both born in Ewloe, Flintshire.
I have no information on Robert, his youth and teenage years, but I believe that his mother, Jane Ellen, died age 30 in 1919. On a happier note we do know that he met and married Olive Jones at St, Mathew’s Church, Buckley on the 22nd April 1935 – Robert JONES, 23, a bachelor and Butcher, his abode Thomas? Buildings, Ewloe, father, Joseph Edward JONES, Builder & Olive JONES, 21 and Spinster, her abode, The Owlets, Wron?? Lane, Buckley. (After Banns) – Witnesses:- Clifford EVANS & Violet BELLIS.
On the Royal Artillery Attestations 1883-1942, which tells us that he was Attested in 1940, and “Presumed died while a P.O.W. between 26th October 1942 & 14th November 1942.” Any information that could help tell his story would be gratefully received.
His four Casualty Lists help tell his story, but not the complete one as you will find out later on in the story. His Casualty Card, below, gives his place of Death as Tobruk, whilst a Prisoner of War and again tells his time of death as above. This also gives his place of birth as Buckley, Chester, Cheshire and his domicile as Ewloe, Chester, Cheshire.
Casualty List 984 (Page 3, shows Robert as a Prisoner of War, but no date.
Casualty List 1338 (Page 13) Previously reported Prisoner of War in Italian Hands – now reported Missing. Missing date for the above 25 names not reported.
Casualty List 1357 (Page 27) List No. 1338 Prisoners of War, Previously reported Prisoner of War in Italian Hands now reported Missing. 1083429 JONES, R. 97 Field Regt. (984) Western Desert. – Should read – 1083429 JONES, R. 97 Field Regt. (984) Middle East.
Casualty List 1371 (Secret) tells us that Robert was “Previously reported missing, Date not reported, now Presumed Died whilst Prisoner of War in Italian Hands,” 26th October 1942 & 14th November 1942.” (1338 – Corrected by 1357.)
It appears that Robert was among hundreds of Allied Prisoners of War who were captured and transported from North Africa to Italy in the ‘SS Scillin,’ and was sunk by a British Royal Navy Submarine, the ‘Sahib.’
Many thanks to the WW2talk Forum, whom I turned to once again to get Roberts story, which is such a sad one for the many hundreds of Allied servicemen who died in other ‘Friendly Fire’ incidents.
Taken from – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Scillin:-
SS Scillin was a 1,591 GRT cargo steamship that was built in Scotland in 1903, passed through a succession of owners of various nationalities and had a succession of different names. She was built as H. M. Pellatt but was successively called Memling, Nicole Le Borgne, Giuliana Pagan and Scillin Secondo before becoming Scillin in 1937.
By the time of the Second World War the ship was in Italian ownership. In 1942 a Royal Navy submarine sank her in the Mediterranean Sea when she was transporting over 800 Allied prisoners of war (POWs) from North Africa to Italy, killing nearly all of them. The United Kingdom kept the cause of her sinking secret until 1996, more than 50 years after the event.
There is a Memorial Plaque at the National Memorial Arboretum https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Memorial_Arboretum
His family made sure that he was remembered by adding his name to the War Memorial, as he was so well loved.
According to the National Register, Olive was to marry again on the 23rd August 1945 to David T. Ball in a Civil Ceremony at Hawarden. (Flintshire (Mold) HAW/17/51). Then again on the 3rd February 1971 to a gentleman named Moseley, but I cannot find the marriage.
I also found a burial of a Joseph Edward Jones in the Hawarden Parish Regiters, he was buried on the 23rd January 1947, age 59 years, he had died in Lluesty Hospital, Holywell.