Well things are plodding along as usual. Despite of this Corona nonsense, we are still doing what we can. Not much has gone home recently, we are still sitting at just over 450 tags returned. Still, I always look back at the first day when we said, "wouldn't it be good to return just one".
Aside from the odd person telling us that they don't want a tag returned every person we ever talk to about this project is always nice, pleasant and positive... until today. In fact this person was such a **** that he earned his own page on the website within an hour... and not for a good reason. I won't post it again on here, but feel free to read up and see the 'dark' side of what crap we get to put up with when working on this project.
As a result of listing these tags on good ol'EBay, it has gained us lots more publicity and we have been getting more requests for family members tags. Sadly nothing has come to fruition yet, but the more than ask, the higher the chance of success.
The great people at the 'Wartime Memories Project' is still sending plenty of people are way, sadly not many matches recently, but there are a couple more leads I need to follow up. Even when they don't match the families are always excited to discuss their relatives and I always have a quick look to see if I can find any files that relate to them that I can send them. Lots of them are rightly very proud that people in their families served and its great that I can share simple things like files we find on groups like FindMyPast with them.
7963117 MORRISON WGA, 141st Royal Armoured Corps. I had a message through the website asking to check if we had Walter Morrisons dog-tags as they would have been his fathers. He went on to explain that his father had died back in 1975 when he was only 16 so sadly he never knew much about his war record other than that he drove a tank. A couple of years ago he started to look into his fathers military history and discovered he was in the 141st RAC (The buffs). He learned a lot during his research, but discovered a lot more about the regiment than he did about what he specifically did as he was in HQ squadron. The War Diaries give a lot more detail about what A, B, and C squadron did, but not so much on HQ. He then said "Anyway, I don't suppose there is a dog tag kicking about after all these years with my fathers name on it". Of course, I get so many of these and far too many I have to start with, "I'm sorry....". However this one was a hit, a pair of tags. I emailed Andrew back right away and he was almost at a loss for words! I don't think he quite believed it at first, he asked "what now?" I simply asked for an address and they will be with you in a couple of days. It's that simple. I had a few nice emails go back and forwards and confirmation that the tags arrived safe and sound and are now being treasured by a son who sadly didn't get to hear about his fathers stories first hand.
It has been a while since this was updated, most people would probably assume that with the Covid-19 lockdown that I would have even more time to devote to this website... however it would appear not! A couple of days ago I had an email from a chap called Phillip. In the message it told me that he had purchased a medal group 1939-45 star, Burma Star w/ Pacific bar and War Medal with MiD device and a dog-tag from the owner and rthe details on his dog-tag matched one of these from the project.
I was already excited as you can imagine, I asked for photos of the medals and tag and told him the story about these tags. Sadly the reply I got wasn't as possitive or exciting as I hope!
As the photographed showed, it was actually one of my dog-tags that he had already purchased... but not from me. How odd? I asked where he had gotten them from, and I was told a dealer in Bristol. When I checked the database it was clear that this was one of the 'extra' tags made in error as I still had a full set of 3 here. It's even possible that I sold a full set of three tags to someone and there is three sets of medals just like those floating around for sale. Hopefully not!
I informed Phillip of the tags history, sent him in the direction of the money grabbers at the Tank Museum Archieve Room to see what files they have on him. He did ask if he could purchased the Betts tags to complete his set, so I kept the one that matched his format (incase we can find the family) and sent him the other two to complete his set.
Hopefully Phillip will track down information on this soldier and he has already promised to share all and iny information with us on him. Fingers Crossed!