20 October 2009

13027335 Cpl James William Oddy, Pioneer Corps

13027335 Corporal James William Oddy of the Pioneer Corps died on the 20th October 1943 whilst serving near Haifa in Palestine. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission website had this to say about Khayat Beach War Cemetery where James is buried:

"Haifa was of great strategic importance during the Second World War because of its deep water harbour and airfield. It was also the terminus of the railway line from Egypt and of the Kirkuk-Haifa oil pipeline. Haifa became one of the main supply bases and arms depots serving the Middle East forces and a large naval depot was established at Haifa Bay. The cemetery was prepared in 1941 for the burial of service war dead in northern Palestine (now Israel) but graves were also brought in from Haifa (Sharon) British Civil Cemetery, from Mafrog Cemetery in the former Trans-Jordan and from Dafna Cemetery in Syria. Among the Merchant Navy seamen buried in the cemetery are those who lost their lives when the SS 'Zealand' was torpedoed off the coast of Palestine on 28 June 1942. The cemetery now contains 691 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War, and 91 war graves of other nationalities. Among the 95 non-war burials in the cemetery are some of men of the Merchant Navy who died during the war, but whose deaths were not due to war service. However, the majority of the non-war graves are of soldiers who died during disturbances preceding the end of the British Mandate in Palestine in May 1948."

James Oddy was born in Leeds and living in Leeds when he enlisted. He was 40 years old at the time of his death. The War Graves Photographic project has a photo of his grave.

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

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