The London Irish Rifles Association web site has received a very moving note and several photographs from Lyn Christiensen about her mother's first husband, who was killed while serving with the 1st Battalion during their first Second World War battle at Fosso Bottaceto in Sicily.
In her note to us, Lyn said:
".... my Mother's first husband's his name was L.Cpl. Michael Albert SHIMES, service number 7014065, of the 1st Battalion of the London Irish Rifles and he was killed on 18th July 1943 near Catania, Sicily, where he is buried.
My Mum is now almost 95 but she still remembers him and how much she loved him. She has visited his grave twice, for the first time in 1993 with the British Legion, and again in 2005.
I have heard stories about Michael and still have all his medals and hackle and photographs and letters and I am attaching some for you to see here.
I also know that “Mick”, as my mother called him, had a brother (Richard William Shimes), was also killed during the war, while serving with in the RAF in England...."
We are hoping that the Association is able to visit Sicily in the near future and we shall certainly be paying our respects in person to L/Cpl Shimes and all his comrades, who lie at peace at Catania and Syracuse CWGC cemeteries.