Bombardier Ronald A Orchard

16 Apr 1942

Ronald Arthur Orchard enlisted into the Royal Artillery in December 1939.

In late 1940 or early 1941 he volunteered for Airborne Forces and was trained as an Army Parachutist, and served in the 11th Special Air Service Battalion (Parachute Wing).

By August 1941 he was a Bombardier, and the Second-in-Command of a Section in the newly formed 13 Platoon, ‘U’ Company, when it was being converted to the 1st Parachute Battalion. ‘U’ Company was gradually broken up, as it was used to form specialists for other Platoon’s in the Battalion, and Bdr. Orchard was allocated to the Mortar Platoon. In March he attended a Mortar Course and returned to the Battalion on 1 April 1942.

He was killed in an accident 16 April 1942, aged 23 years old.

The son of Arthur L. Orchard and Katharine M. Orchard, of Southcourt, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, he is buried at Tidworth Military Cemetery, Section D (C of E), grave 164.

Biography courtesy of Bob Hilton, with the grave image kindly from Jock Love.

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Service History

Colour photo of the grave of RA Orchard

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