Airborne Engineers Association

Henry Witcherley

 

 

Henry Witcherley (Royal Engineers, SBS and Royal Australian Engineers)

 

Born in Liverpool England 26 May 1920 - Died In Bundaberg Australia 28 November 2011

Henry was born in Liverpool, and shortly afterwards the family moved to Manchester where Henry was brought up.
At seventeen and a half; Henry joined the Royal Engineers, and at the outbreak of WWII he was stationed in Gibraltar, as a "Specialist Searchlight Operator". During the worst of the London Blitz he was part of a "UXB Clearance Team".

In 1942 he joined the newly formed 2 Para Squadron RE, serving in North Africa. He was wounded in Sicily, and selected for the SBS/SAS in Italy.

His OC in the Special Boat Squadron was the legendary Anders Lassen VC and 3 times MC. With this unit Henry operated throughout Italy seeing much action. Henry was in M Detachment on the last of many SBS operations, in April 1945, on the east side of Lake Comacchio, Northern Italy.

After he was demobbed in 1946, Henry migrated to Australia and met and married Mavis in 1951. Henry joined the Australian Army and served in several units: - 24th Construction Squadron RAE 1952-1957, and was an instructor to "E " Company National Service at Wacol.
It is said he volunteered for the Korean War, but was told he was too old.

Henry took his discharge, and worked for years in the postal service in Brisbane. His wife Mavis, a son and two daughters survive Henry.

Mal his mate of many years tells various antidotes of Henry's life both in and out of service life.

 

 

 

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