COCKLESHELL HERO

Discussion in 'Waffle' started by Fratanize, Jan 27, 2009.

  1. Fratanize

    Fratanize Keepin the jungle alive

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,140
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    PORTSMOUTH
    I work in a rehab ward for the elderly. Recently i have cared for a 96 yr old man who i am told was a COCKLESHELL HERO. These guys in the second world war used to canoe out to enemy warships and stick lympit mines on the sides.
    This old man is sound as fuck. He is dying and very ill. I have not seen him moan once. He rattles and wheezes and is nearly gone, He always gives a smile and says thanks for any help.
    RESPECT DUE.
     
  2. Fratanize

    Fratanize Keepin the jungle alive

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,140
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    PORTSMOUTH
    The twelve men that formed the Cockleshell Heroes were taken by submarine and dropped off the coast of Bordeaux. The plan was for the six teams of two men to paddle five miles to the mouth of the River Gironde, paddle seventy miles up it, plant limpet mines of the ships in the harbour and then make their way to Spain.

    The raid started badly once the men were due to be dropped off by HMS Tuna. One of the canoes was holed as it was being made ready on the Tuna. The two Royal Marines who were meant to have used this canoe – called ‘Cachalot’ – could not take part in the raid. It is said that Marines Fisher and Ellery were left in tears at their disappointment.

    The leader of the raid was Major ‘Blondie’ Hasler. His partner was Marine Bill Sparks. Their canoe was code-named ‘Catfish’. As the canoes approached the mouth of the Gironde they hit a violent rip tide. The waves were five feet high and the canoe ‘Conger’ was lost. The two crew of Conger – Corporal George Sheard and Marine David Moffat – were towed by the other canoes. Once near the shoreline, both men had to swim to the shore as they were slowing down the remaining canoes. Neither men made it to the shore and they were assumed to have drowned.

    The crew of the canoe ‘Coalfish’ – Sergeant Samuel Wallace and Marine Jock Ewart - were caught by the Germans and shot.

    The crew of the ‘Cuttlefish’ – Lieutenant John Mackinnon and Marine James Conway – had to abandon their canoe after it was damaged. They were also caught by the Germans, handed over to the Gestapo and shot.

    With four canoes down, the raiders were only left with two canoes. Along with ‘Catfish’, ‘Crayfish’ was left crewed by Marine William Mills and Corporal Albert Laver.

    By now, the Germans knew that something was up and they had done a great deal to increase patrols along the river. The two crew paddled at night and hid during the day.

    The two canoes got to the harbour. Here they were spotted by a sentry who failed to raise the alarm – possibly he mistook what he saw for driftwood as both crews remained motionless in their canoes as they had been trained to do.

    The crew of both remaining cockleshells placed limpet mines on the merchant ships they found in the harbour. They had an eight minute fuse on them, giving the Marines time to get away. Both ‘Crayfish’ and ‘Catfish’ escaped on the tide. The damage to Bordeaux harbour was severe. Now the crews had to leave their canoes, move on foot and link up with the French Resistance at the town of Ruffec. The Germans automatically assumed that the men would travel south to Spain. In fact, they travelled 100 miles north of Bordeaux – a journey that took them two months.

    Laver and Mills, who were moving separately from Sparks and Hasler, were caught by the Germans and shot. With the help of the French Resistance, Hasler and Sparks reached Spain and then Gibraltar. Even here, Sparks met problems. Hasler used his rank to get transported back to Britain. However, Sparks did not have such luck and was arrested. In fact the Chief of Combined Operations, Lord Louis Mountbatten, had assumed all the men were dead, so anyone claiming to be them would have been treated with suspicion.

    Sparks was put under guard by the military police. However, he slipped these guards at Euston Station in London and, after visiting his father, made his way to the Combined Operations Headquarters.
     
  3. Joey AdhD

    Joey AdhD sweaty scouser

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2008
    Messages:
    7,158
    Likes Received:
    298
    Location:
    Liverpool, United Kingdom

    Epic, wot a story that is, brave men.
     
  4. RocksteadyUK

    RocksteadyUK SkimoBeats

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2007
    Messages:
    7,753
    Likes Received:
    198
    Location:
    Peckham
  5. BDS

    BDS Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3,224
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Ye Olde England
    What a legend,
     
  6. duffer

    duffer Under Mi SensI...........

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Messages:
    1,254
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    BRISTOL BS11
    :word:

    :lighter:
     
  7. logikz

    logikz I Am Not The King Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2002
    Messages:
    10,556
    Likes Received:
    2,520
    Location:
    www.easternpromiseaudio.com
    jeez man some people are so fucking old
     
  8. Dan M

    Dan M hard gay northern bear

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2008
    Messages:
    5,053
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    YORKSHIRE
    good thread.


    you jus dont get really hard bastards like you used to.
     
  9. Fratanize

    Fratanize Keepin the jungle alive

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,140
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    PORTSMOUTH
    yeah, a true hero waiting to die because his life is now being fed weetabix by people like me, pissing in a catheter, cant talk without coughing up spewtum and blood.
    No way for a hero to die imo.
    do what you can while your young peeps.
     
  10. Dan M

    Dan M hard gay northern bear

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2008
    Messages:
    5,053
    Likes Received:
    10
    Location:
    YORKSHIRE
    this guy is going in the who are your heroes thread now.
     
  11. Fratanize

    Fratanize Keepin the jungle alive

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,140
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    PORTSMOUTH
    too right mate.
     
  12. Welsh Junglist

    Welsh Junglist AKA Faqade

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2007
    Messages:
    1,606
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    North Wales
    Fair dos to the man, he put his life on the line without even thinking about it for a second. This is what I call serving your country, if men and women hadn't fought and served in the war then what would life be like now? I dread to think. And as for him not complaining, this is how people were back then, just got on with it no moaning, not like society today, full of little bitches who compain about the slightest little thing. Good on him. It is a shame as he is part of a dying breed and a very noble person.
     
  13. Fratanize

    Fratanize Keepin the jungle alive

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,140
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    PORTSMOUTH
    just as an update on the cockleshell hero i am caring for.
    I woke him up today for breakfast and his response was this " Oh Bloody hell! I'm awake!"
    This was followed by "SHITTERS". Funny man.
     
  14. Gumby

    Gumby New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2006
    Messages:
    6,208
    Likes Received:
    10
    :lol: thats awesome

    :respekt: