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Thread: Medical treatment of RAF personnel injured in air raids

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    Default Medical treatment of RAF personnel injured in air raids

    Can anyone please help with information on why a member of RAF personnel, who was injured in an air raid at Nuneaton on 28th August 1940, would be taken all the way to RAF Cosford for treatment. It is not certain whether he was injured in the raid or whilst helping with rescue work. However, he was hurt enough to be kept in hospital for three weeks before returning to RAF Bramcote.

    Would it not have been more practical to have treated him locally?

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    I suggest it would very much depend on the extent and severity of the injuries, Neville.

    One of my subjects was an AC2 stationed at Pembrey, but on the night of 17-18 February 1941 he was in Swansea helping civil authorities during the raid on the docks. He suffered very severe injuries whilst recovering an elderly lady from her house, and was admitted to Swansea General Hospital (his service records states he was Transferred to Swansea Hospital). He remained there until 25 March, only then was he transferred to St Athan Hospital. He was not discharged from hospital until the end of November 1941, and even then did not return to duty until the following May. His injuries included the loss of half a lung and two ribs. In total there were 55 deaths and 97 injured.

    This doesn't really answer your question, but it may be that your man's injuries were not considered sufficiently serious for him to be kept in Nuneaton .

    Brian
    Last edited by Lyffe; 27th April 2016 at 19:32. Reason: The night's casualties added

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    Thanks Brian,

    It is odd that you should be the first to reply - the man in question was John Comper - whose name you might recall from our conversations about Werbowski! I am trying to find out what injuries he suffered but the experience caused him to lose his previously strong faith - perhaps because a 9 year old girl was killed in the raid.

    Incidentally, I have had a positive response from your wife's cousin who has promised me information and photos.

    Regards
    Neville

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    I thought you would get help from that source. As an aside, because Werbowski's name appears in my wife's family tree, she's just received a request for information about him via Ancestry. Unfortunately the message was rather vague so she's asked the sender to elaborate.

    Brian
    Last edited by Lyffe; 27th April 2016 at 20:33.

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    Brian,

    I am certain that this man is trying to help me - he told me he had seen Werbowski's details mentioned on an Ancestry family tree site and that he had contacted the owner. All this in the last couple of days. He is a well known, genuine and respected researcher and usually signs himself TD or the full version of those initials

    Neville
    Last edited by archivist; 27th April 2016 at 21:54. Reason: Add last sentence

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    Back in the day, pre NHS, and when the single services operated their own hospitals, it was SOP for injured and sick service personnel to be treated in their own establishments. I have access to plenty of service records that illustrate this point. In the case of your Nuneaton chap, I would suggest that he was probably taken by amublance to the local hospital (the Manor?), assessed by Doctors as being suitable for transfer, and despatched to the nearest RAF Hospital, which in this case was Cosford.
    In fond memory of Corporal James Oakland AGC (RMP), killed in action in Afghanistan on 22 October 2009. Exemplo Ducemus.

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    Thanks Jonny,

    It had totally slipped my mind that this was pre-NHS and I think you may have hit on the exact reason for his transfer to Cosford. It is sad that he had to be moved 50 miles to get the appropriate treatment.

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