When Freddie Friend first recounted the story of Harry Marsh’s death I was slow to react. It was only after meeting him at his home that I decided I could do something to help him and in that sense I was lucky everything came together, with a lot of help from the excellent folk on WW2Talk and the Liverpool Echo.
“Harry” Marsh was 4126455 Henry Marsh.
The story is best told via these two links:
I think it’s important to note that the Echo appears to have written a simplified story of the air attack that led to Harry’s death. Freddie was always quite clear to me that Harry was wounded by fire from a Bofors gun that had been hurriedly brought into action during maintenance, thus preventing it being elevated correctly. The war diary similarly records the cause as “AA Shell” which I wrongly assumed meant an enemy 88mm, until Freddie declared otherwise.
Freddie Friend passed away in May 2016. You got the feeling he thought of Harry every day.