George Simms

: Ardwick, Manchester ,1923

Age at signing up
: 18


: Royal Marines
A large Allied amphibious and airborne operation which opened the campaign to liberate Italy from Axis Forces. It began on the night of 9/10 July1943 and ended on 17 August 1943. Strategically, the invasion achieved its objectives, driving Axis air, land and naval forces from the island and opening the Mediterranean sea lanes to Allied merchant ships for the first time since 1941. The Italian leader, Benito Mussolini, was toppled from power and the way was opened for the Allied invasion of Italy
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6th June 1944, DDay; George was only twenty years of age when he took part in the Normandy landings. He was in 41 Royal Marine Commando which landed with the first wave on Sword Beach alongside Major Chaplin, the Officer Commanding Y Troop. He remembered this day vividly for the rest of his life.
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The family lived in Emma St. Ardwick, Manchester.

His Father, George, had been wounded during World War 1 serving in Mesopotamia (Iraq)

Postwar; he was a driver of a steam traction engine working on the roads. He died around 1963

His Mother, May, died when George was 10 or 11 aged 39.

He had 2 older Sisters, May and Edna.

George was a clever lad – top in English and Maths at his junior school but his schooling was seriously disrupted after the death of his Mother when the three children lived in various homes and with relatives.

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I was just one of the lucky ones that came out alive