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Former pupils join Llanelli Veterans for VJ Day

August 15th 2020 marked 75 years since VJ Day, the date of the Japanese surrender. The Llanelli Veterans Association organized an event at the Town Hall. A number of former Grammar School old boys were in attendance, including Lieutenant Colonel David Mathias, George Parker and Rev Eldon Phillips ( who conducted the service)  and laid a wreath in honour of the seven former pupils – five Royal Air Force, two Army – who fell in the conflict with the Japanese Imperial forces. Their names as below. This film shows some of the highlights of the event.


DAVID EDWARD CLEMENT, Aircraftman 2nd Class, 1417979, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. David was the son of William and Elizabeth Clement, of Llangennech. He served with 177 Squadron, Royal Air Force, which was equipped with the Bristol Beaufighter VIC, based at Phaphamau, in India. David died in India, aged 35, on 28 May 1943. He is buried at Delhi War Cemetery, India.

ALFORD GRIFFITH EDWARDS, Sergeant, 961445, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Alford was the son of Albert G. Edwards and Esther J. Edwards, of Burry Port, and served with the Royal Air Force, based in India. Alford died in India on 10 October 1944. He was 28 years old, and is buried at Kirkee War Cemetery, India

HAROLD LLOYD EVANS, Lieutenant, 253650, Royal Welch Fusiliers. Harold was born in Llanelli early in 1920. He married Henrietta McCree, of 234, Bushbury Road, Fallings Park, Wolverhampton in 1942. Harold had been commissioned into the Royal Welch Fusiliers, but after being posted to the Far East was attached to the Headquarters of the 2nd West African Infantry Brigade, R.W.A.F.F. Harold died in Burma on 15 March 1945, aged 25, and is commemorated on the Rangoon Memorial, Myanmar. His widow Henrietta later moved to Carmarthen, before marrying again and moving to Llanelli.

DONALD JEREMIAH, MID, Squadron Leader, 40395, Royal Air Force. Donald was the son of Emlyn and Olwen Jeremiah, of St. Pauls, Llanelli, and the husband of Pauline Jeremiah. He was a pilot, and became a Squadron Leader with 297 Squadron, Royal Air Force, which flew secret SOE missions. Donald died in Bermuda on 11 January 1944, aged 24, and is buried in Nassau War Cemetery, Bermuda.

BARRY PUGH JONES, Corporal, 653301, Royal Air Force. Barry was the son of William Horace and Lily Jones, of Llanelli. He served in the Far East with the Royal Air Force. Barry was captured at Java by the Japanese and arrived at the notorious Sandakan Camp in April 1943. Barry died in captivity on 15 April 1945, aged 24, and was originally buried in Sandakan. His grave was removed to Labuan War Cemetery, Malaysia after the war. The photograph below has been kindly supplied by Tony Beck.

IORWERTH JOHN REES, Private, 14821436, Welch Regiment. Iorwerth was the son of David and Beatrice Rees, of Llanelli, and the husband of June Rees, of Llanelli. He served with the 2nd Battalion, Welch Regiment. The battalion was in India at the outbreak of war, and remained in the Far East, Iorwerth was killed when a convoy he was travelling in was ambushed by the Japanese on 28 July 1945. He was 20 years old, and is buried in Rangoon War Cemetery, Myanmar.

WILLIAM KENNETH STEPHENS, Aircraftman 2nd Class, 1072395, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. William was the son of Edgar and May Stephens, of Llanelli. He served with 27 Squadron, Royal Air Force, which flew the Bristol Blenheim IF, and was based in Malaysia, at Sungei Patani. William was killed during the Japanese invasion of Malaya on 8 December 1941. He was 22 years old, and is commemorated on the Singapore Memorial, Singapore.

The above details courtesy of the West Wales War Memorial Project, author Mr. Steven John