A Poppy
A Poppy

Memorials & Monuments
on the Isle of Wight
- Biography -
- Raymond John Western -

Name : Raymond John Western

Son of : Albert Western and Louisa Elsie Western (formerly Western, née Gladdis), of Whitwell.

Born : 1922.
  Electoral roll information :

1922 : The family are at Holden Cottage, parish of Godshill.

1938 : The family are at Whitwell Farm Cottages, parish of Niton.

  Service Details :

Boy 1st cl. P/JX 157755 Raymond John Western, Royal Navy, H.M.S. Royal Oak.

Portsmouth naval memorial : R Western Casualty Details :

Died : 14 October 1939, aged 17, in the sinking of H.M.S. Royal Oak.

Commemorated at : Portsmouth Naval Memorial

CWGC Record
  Commemorated on these Memorials :

Ventnor Holy Trinity Church South Wight Scouts War Memorial
Whitwell War Memorial
  Documents and Newspaper cuttings :


Friday, October 20, 1939 Page 2

Local casualties on the Royal Oak, etc.
The war has been brought closer home to us this week by news of the casualties to local men by the sinking of the Royal Oak.
Raymond Western, aged 18, formerly of Dean Crossing, Whitwell, lost his life in the same disaster. His mother lost her first husband in the last Great War and married his brother, the father of the young lad now reported dead.
Our hearts will be moved in sympathy for the bereaved and anxious.
(not all the report has been transcribed)

Saturday, October 21, 1939
Boy Ray Western, 17, son of Mr. and Mrs. A. Western, of Nell Bank, Whitwell. He joined the Navy in March, 1938, and did his training at Gosport, joining the Royal Oak when she was commissioned in June. It is his parents' third loss of a near relative in eight months.


Friday, October 27, 1939 Page 3


THE LATE RAYMOND WESTERN, R.N. - The loss in the Royal Oak of Raymond Western, son of Mr. and Mrs. A.E. Western, of Nell Bank, aroused feelings of the deepest sympathy with the bereaved parents, and this was marked by the large congregation which assembled at the service at the Parish Church on Sunday afternoon. Raymond, who was 17 years of age, was a 1st class Boy in the Navy, was very happy in his choice of career, and had prospects of an excellent future. He was employed by Mr. Reed, of Pier Street, Ventnor, for some time before joining the Navy in March 1938. His eldest brother [1] is in a well-known Guards Regiment, and is serving his country somewhere in France. During the service on Sunday the Vicar (the Rev. F. Aker) made a sympathetic reference to the great loss the parents had sustained. He spoke of Raymond's connection with the Church Day and Sunday Schools, and mentioned that he had taken his first communion at that church. He also said how gratified he was for the young life given to protect them all. During the service the hymns sung were "How bright those glorious spirits shine," "Eternal Father," "Loving Shepherd of Thy Sheep," and "The Strife is o'er." - Mrs. Western writes stating that her second husband was not a brother of her first husband as stated last week, we regret that our information, which came from what was considered a reliable source, was incorrect.[2]

[1] The older brother mentioned in the report is Albert George Fitzner Western, Raymond's half-brother, who died in 1975, aged 57.

[2] It appears that his mother's first husband was Harry Fitzner Western who married Louisa Elsie Gladdis, Jun Qtr 1915 in Cardiff. It is not known whether there is any relationship between Albert Western and Harry Western. The only CWGC entry for H F Western found is :

CWGC record... H F Western

There is a Seaman's Record for Harry Fitzner Western on the National Archives website.
There is a birth registration for Harry Fitzman Western in Williton Registration District, Sep Qtr 1894.
Harry F Western is listed under 8-9 October Battle of Cambrai (Sixth and final phase of Hindenburg Line Battle)



Friday, October 27, 1939 Page 3

Some Topical Reflections
By B.W.R.
The Toll of War.
The Island had a large number of casualties through the Royal Oak disaster, and the photographs of several in the county paper brought home to us the reality of war. Fifteen are reported to have been drowned and eight saved. The memorial service for young Ray Western at Whitwell on Sunday was an impressive occasion. News is trickling through of the whereabouts of Ventnor men serving with the Expeditionary Force, and there are a good number in Naval bases somewhere up North. A feature of this war is the readiness of everybody physically fit to take some part in it. Locally dozens of people have offered their services in some capacity, but in most cases there is a chilling response.
  Further information :

Raymond Western's, uncle, his mother's brother, Albert Henry Gladdis, died in WW I.
  Links :

For a list of other Isle of Wight men lost, see Loss of H.M.S. Royal Oak
  Acknowledgments :

Janet Griffin for newspaper and further research
  Page status :
Page last updated : 12 December 2013


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