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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

A deserter ?


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I have been tracing William Henry Smith -  Royal Marine Light Infantry. Service Number 15089 or PLY 158089.

It seems William enlisted in 1910 and went on to serve on a variety of vessels.When I look at his service record his last service was 1 Jan 1916 - 29 May 1916 on the Carnarvon but then no more. When I look at Medal roll for the Royal Marines it lists him as `f' and `r'. Would that really mean he deserted? Or could it mean he changed ship/ unit/ occupation in May 1916?  There is a date of 27/11/1917 on his service record and some text that I can't make out. (I have attached) Any thoughts anyone?

WH Smith service record.jpg

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His record is marked "Run" which means he deserted from HMS CARNARVON (and was never recovered). His entry in the RM Medal Roll also shows desertion (R = Run) and his medal entitlement was, in consequence forfeited (F).

I cannot read the final entry dated 27/11/17. His correct register number is Plymouth/15089 (PLY/15089).

There is an attestation pack of papers for this man in the archive of the Fleet Air Arm Museum (National Museum of the Royal Navy)  fleetairarm.enquiries@NMRN.org.uk


Edited by horatio2
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