Sunday, 26 April 2015

Marsden, John - Private

(No soldier photo available)
2nd. Bn. The Loyal Regiment (North Lancashire)
Died 19 October 1943
Age 23

In September 1939 the 2nd. Battalion, The Loyal Regiment, was part of the garrison of Malaya (now Malaysia). On 8 December 1941, Japanese forces invaded Malaya at Khota Bharu, on the northwest coast. The Loyal Regiment was part of the British forces which made a fighting withdrawal as the Japanese advanced towards Singapore. On 15 February 1942, the British forces capitulated, and the survivors of the Loyal Regiment laid down their arms and marched into captivity. In July 1942 many of the Regiment moved to Korea to work in mines and factories. However, in November 1942, others were sent to work on the Burma to Siam railway. Private John Marsden was one of this group. John worked on the railway for almost twelve months until he died from the effects of malnutrition, overwork and disease.

John was the son of Joseph and the late Mrs. Marsden. He was 23. He attended Beaconsfield Street Independent Methodist Church. At the time of his enlistment in October 1940, he worked for Messrs. J and E Transport. John joined the Regiment in Malaya in February 1941.

John lies in Thanbyuzayat War Cemetery, which is on the Myanmar (formerly Burma), side of the Thailand (formerly Siam), border. Thanbyuzayat was a prisoner of war administration centre, base camp and hospital. The cemetery holds 3,149 Commonwealth graves. John is buried in Plot B 3, Row X, Grave 8.