1. Fifteen members of A Tp, 25 Bty, 9th (Londonderry) HAA Regiment RA (SR) were killed in N.11 gunsite, Villa Nuova, overlooking the city of Naples on 21 October 1943. No. 2 gun took a direct hit from a dive-bomber and the entire detachment of ten died as did two OFsC and three men who had volunteered to act as additional ammunition numbers. In addition to Billy Peoples, Dougie Marks and Jim Gilmour, Lance Bombardier Robert Hamilton, from Culmore, Co. Londonderry, was killed. So, too, was Gnr Aubrey ‘Ginger’ Evans, from Yorkshire. Ten Basuto gunners also perished: Sjt Choni Kharasi, L/Cpl Solomon Mosestheli and Ptes Selet Chele, Lesiame Hlakane, Ramaisa Khoamyane, Tsoebilane Lepota, Morinanile Nena, S. Ntsovbe, Azael Semane and Nkhobiso Tsoasane. All were honorary Ulstermen.
    Serjeant Jim Peoples had been wounded so badly that he wasn’t expected to live. The No. 1 on No. 1 gun, he had refused medical attention until his wounded detachment members – three Basutos – had been seen to. Jim lived for many years afterwards, dying in December 1987. He still carried metal splinters in his body from that night and, strangely, some surfaced almost every October and were removed by a doctor.
    It was believed by many who were there on the night that N.11 had been targeted specifically and that someone on the roof of a nearby house had been signalling to the bombers.


    1. Richard – could you kindly send me names dates etc of the Derry Regiment and I will incorporate in future posts and in the NI wide Artilery RH, I am working on gently. Thanks.Houston


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