Alfred G Ash enlisted into the General Service Corps, before volunteering for airborne forces.
L/Cpl ‘Alf’ Ash transferred to the 3rd Parachute Battalion, after completing his parachute training on course 66 between 25 May to 4 June 1943 at RAF Ringway. The course report records Lance Corporal Ash as 'Good leader. Worked well. Fair Performer.’
He served in Italy and Arnhem, where has was taken as a Prisoner of War (POW).
Alfred was member of the Arnhem 1944 Veterans Club. The club's obituary for him included:
‘On the jump into Holland , his gun tripod was torn from his leg and when recovered was bent out of shape, rendering the Vickers useless. His section were obliged to fight on without their principal asset. The approach to the bridge was hazardous and they were faced with determined resistance.
Alf was captured before reaching the bridge and survived the hard life of the labour gangs as a POW. He survived the bombing of Dresden and was set on the gruesome task of recovering and stacking bodies for disposal. Despite this task he maintained his morale and defiance.
After the war Alf worked for Ford in car design. He retained his interest in military issues and pride in the Parachute Regiment and their achievements.’
Alfred Ash died on 28 February 2009, aged 85.
By Wendy George with assistance from The Arnhem 1944 Veterans Club.Read More