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Reinterment Service for Operation Market Garden Veterans

Reinterment Service for Operation Market Garden Veterans

10th Nov 2016

A burial service was held at 10:00 hours on Wednesday 5 October 2016 at CWGC Arnhem Oosterbeek War Cemetery, The Netherlands, for L/Cpl Donald Stabler Noble and Pte Harold James Lewis, 4th Battalion, Wiltshire Regiment.

The remains of both soldiers were found in February 2013 by a civilian unexploded ordnance contractor.  They had been buried together in a shallow field grave.  Found with the remains were some artefacts, including a Wiltshire Regiment cap badge and a Warwickshire Regiment button.

Following research of the 4th Battalion Wiltshire Regiment Roll by the Royal Netherlands Army Recovery & Identification Unit and David Chilton in England, there were 7 possible candidates, 5 of whom were ruled out by their age, height or dental records.  This left only Donald Noble and Harold Lewis. Both had been killed during the ‘Battle of the Island’ when the 43rd Wessex Division battled to get to a group of surrounded paratroopers in Arnhem.

Members of the ‘Redcoats’ the Society of Friends and Regimental Museum volunteers attended the service. The Redcoats President Brigadier Patrick Davidson-Houston CBE represented the Regiment.  Redcoat Members Ex Lieutenant Colonel David Chilton and Colonel Michael Cornwell OBE acted as the standard bearers. Redcoat members and volunteers who also attended were Nigel Walker (Redcoats Chairman), John Peters, Chris Bacon, Richard Joyner, Bob Hambling, and ‘Mac’ McIntyre.  Also part of the group was Jeff Mathews, ex Wiltshire Regiment.  Mr Matthews has attended all the events leading to the recovery of Wiltshire Soldiers in that area and is directly responsible for the erection of the 4th and 5th Battalions memorial at De Larr Farm which lists all those from both battalions who fell in this area.

May they Rest in Peace.