Bennett, F J

  • Name on memorial: Bennett, F J
  • Memorial panel: Centre
  • Full name: Frederick John Bennett
  • Rank: Warrant Officer Class II
  • Service details: 1863807, 159 Railway Construction Company, Royal Engineers
  • Age at death: 39
  • Date of death: 17/06/1940
  • Birth place: unknown
  • Parents: John Henry and Annie Eliza Bennett
  • Mother's maiden name: Pitcher
  • Parents' marriage details: Banbury Dec-00
  • Wife: Florence Ada Bennett, of Erith, Kent
  • Wife's maiden name: Sparvell
  • Marriage details: Dartford Jun-26
  • Additional information: Frederick Bennett was killed during the sinking of the troopship HMT Lancastria, which was bombed and sunk by Junkers 88 bombers in the estuary of the River Loire, on Monday, 17 June 1940. Over 2000 troops, RAF personnel, civilians and crew died, making this the worst single loss of life in British maritime history. Newspapers were banned from reporting the event for many weeks, because of the possible effect on British morale. The Lancastria was part of Operation Ariel, which ran from 14th to 25th June 1940, and during which 215,000 troops were evacuated from French ports. The Lancastria, anchored off St Nazaire, had embarked up to 9,000 civilians and troops when she suffered three direct hits at 15.48 and sank within 20 minutes.

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