59th (Staffordshire) Division 1939-1944

5th Battalion, South Staffordshire Regiment

Submitted April 2014 by Allan Macintyre, whose father, Donald Macintyre, commanded 'D' Company, 5 South Staffords (177 Brigade). He was awarded the Military Cross for his part in the 59 Division's first action in Normandy on 8/9 July 1944 at Galmanche.

Click each thumbnail for a larger view.

Officers of 5 South Staffs taken in the immediate period prior to going to Normandy. Major Donald Macintyre is seated in the front row, third from the right.
The division's photographer was from Canterbury, suggesting that the photo (above) may well have been taken on June 6 itself. General Ritchie (12 Corps) noted in his preface to The 59th Division, Its War Story:
On the 6th June, 1944, I was privileged to attend the Division's Service of Dedication in Canterbury Cathedral, and can confirm the Divisional Commander's reference to the choice of that day being a happy coincidence; for I know I had accepted his invitation sometime before even I knew when 'D' Day was to be. I am proud to have been present at that stirring service, and to have taken the salute afterwards.
Army Form W3121 - Citation recommendation for Major Macintyre's Military Cross. Note that ultimate sign-off was that of BL Montgomery
Officers of the 5th South Staffs. Point of interest: The officers at the extreme left and right in the back row were Czechs who were attached to the battalion. The individual on the far left achieved high rank in the Czech army. Neither of these officers were with the battalion in Normandy.

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http://59div.morssweb.com/?5sstaffs - April 06, 2014
original text and graphics copyright © 2017 Robert Morss