9 September 2009

1594942 Bombardier Harold Gofton, Royal Artillery

Yorkshireman 1594942 Bombardier Harold Gofton of 78 Battery, 35 Lt. Anti-Aircraft, Royal Artillery, died on this day - 9th September - in 1945. He was 31 years old, the son of Frederick Robert and Mary Louisa Gofton and the husband of Lilian Gofton of Grimethorpe, Yorkshire.

Harold was born in York and living in York when he enlisted. He is buried in Labuan War Cemetery in Malyasia (Malaya, at the time he died); grave reference: L.C.1.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission has this to say about the cemetery:

"Labuan (part of Sabah, Malaysia) is a small island in Brunei Bay, off the coast of north-west Borneo. The island is best reached by air from Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital, from where there are daily flights. There are also flights from Singapore and Manila. The cemetery lies on the Jalan Tanjong Batu road which leads from the airport to the town. It is less than a kilometre from the airport and about 3 kilometres from the Island's town; Victoria. Within the Cemetery will be found the Labuan Memorial and the Labuan Cremation Memorial."

The War Graves Photographic Project has a photo of Harold's grave. As can be seen from the photo above the headstones are not those that we would typically associate with the Commonwealth War Graves Commission but rather plaques mounted on stone slabs.

At the going down of the sun, and in the morning, WE WILL REMEMBER THEM.


Ancestry.co.uk (1939-1945 Roll of Honour)
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
The War Graves Photographic Project
Labuan Tourism for the photograph

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