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Thread: Martin Kennedy, W/Op, P.o.W. 1940?

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    Default Martin Kennedy, W/Op, P.o.W. 1940?

    Hello everyone,

    I came across the following article in the Newcastle Evening Chronicle of October 15th 1940:

    SEATON DELAVAL MAN WAR PRISONER
    Martin Kennedy, R.A.F. wireless operator and 26 year old son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Kennedy, of Foreman's Row, Seaton Delaval, is a prisoner of war in Germany. He was posted missing, but a few days afterwards his family received two postcards from him. He celebrated his 26th birthday in a German prison camp.


    I can't seem to track him down. Air 78 seems to have half the Kennedy cards missing. There's no match in the R.A.F. P.o.W. files on the Forum, or Air 81, or in OCB's 'Footprints in the Sands of Time.' The nearest match is 37474 S/Ldr. M. N. McF. Kennedy, Blenheim R3895, 114 Sqn, July 31st 1940, but that's Melville Neil MacFadyen Kennedy.

    I think he may be Martin Hall Kennedy, b.1914, registered Tynemouth, m.m.s. Owen.

    Can anyone help with my mystery P.o.W.? Might he be possibly be a Fleet Air Arm W/Op, rather than R.A.F....?

    Many thanks,

    Regards

    Simon

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    Hello Simon,

    An interesting case ! He is probably 641106 AC2 Martin Hall Kennedy.

    641106 AC2 M.A. Kennedy appears in both the early and late versions of the online (TNA) RAF POW lists for Germany. The initial 'A' is an error as he appears on the online AIR 78 cards as 641106 Martin Hall (see AIR 78/90/7/98). I cannot find him anywhere else, not even in the 'FLIGHT' Archives website ( he may be there but will not show up if they have his service number wrong). What is interesting is that he was not promoted at all during his time as a POW, making me think he was not aircrew. He may have been a Wireless Operator (ground), there is no mention in the paper of him being an Air Gunner or that he was shot down. Probably taken prisoner in France or even Norway ?

    As you saw there are very few Martin Kennedys on AIR 78. In fact looking at their S/Ns there is only one other possibility for the 1940 period, 945166 Martin Cairns Kennedy.

    Regards,

    Martin Gleeson.

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    Thank you Martin, much appreciated.

    We seem to be making some progress. I did wonder if he had fallen into enemy hands on the ground, whether as you say in France or in Norway.

    I do seem to have found his parents on the 1939 Register, living at 29 Foreman's Row, Seaton Delaval:

    Kennedy, Joseph E, [Edward] b. August 3rd 1886
    Kennedy, Edith A. [Anne], b Nov. 26th 1885

    From FreeBMD it seems they were married in 1913, registered Tynemouth in June 1913 and her maiden name is recorded as Owen.

    There is a third entry, unfortunately marked 'officially closed' which presumably is Martin.

    Regards

    Simon

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    Simon I suspect the officially closed person is a younger brother or sister they open the closed 1939 records on the 100 birthday if anyone they cannot prove has subsequently died

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    At the risk of confusing myself even further there is a Martin H. Kennedy on the 1939 Register living at 14 Foreman's Row, b. Jan. 17th 1922. Obviously this ties in with the newspaper article but the age doesn't.

    There are four Kennedy brothers at the same address: Martin H. Kennedy, b. 1922, Robert A. Kennedy, b. 1923, Lawrence H. Kennedy, b. 1924 and James Kennedy b. 1926. All four registered Tynemouth, m.m.s. Mullen. The eldest three are all 'rope lads in coal mine - underground.' There's no father on the Register, but a family tree on ancestry records him as Martin Hall Kennedy, b. 1893...

    So, if his service number is 641106, he enlisted in 1938 (is that right?), so couldn't be on the 1939 Register as a rope lad. So he must be a 29 Foreman's Row Kennedy, rather than a 14 Foreman's Row Kennedy...?

    Anyway, I've sent a message to the owner of the family tree on ancestry, so we'll see if they can enlighten me.

    Regards

    Simon

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    If enlisted in services already then may not be on 1939 Register

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    No joy from ancestry unfortunately. The search continues...

    Regards

    Simon

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