Rededication service for Second Lieutenants Boswell and Gundill - Ieper - 29/06/2022
On Wednesday 29 June 2022 a rededication service took place for Second Lieutenant Alan Thompson Boswell RAF and Second Lieutenant Robert Percy Gundill RAF. The service took place on Duhallow A.D.S. in Ieper where both soldiers were already buried. Through research it has now been proved that both soldiers could be identified and could now be given a headstone with their name on. 


The soldiers were already buried next to each other as an unknown soldier, but now they received a new headstone with their name on.

Robert Percy Gundill was born on 3 January 1897 in Pontefract, West Yorkshire, he had 8 siblings (6 brothers and 2 sistsres). He attended Kings School in Pontefract and his father Henry was a liquorice manufacturer as was Robert before he enlisted into the West Yorkshire Regiment in December 1914. 

Private Gundill served overseas, including in Egypt before being commissioned into The Northumberland Fusiliers on 25 April 1917. Second Lieutenant Gundill then applied to transfer to the Royal Flying Corps and was appointed as an Observer on 6 July 1918 and posted to 108 Sqn. Gundill's nephew, Lieutenant Peter Gundill joined the West Yorkshire Regiment and was killed in action on 5 June in Lybia.

Alan Thompson Watt Boswell was born on 3 May 1890 in Woolwhich, he had 4 siblings (3 brothers and 1 sister). He attended Cardiff High School and then the University College of South Wales where he gained his degree in chemistry having won a scholarship to attend. Alan was a very talented athlete and represented Wales in hockey and football and his County at cricket and rugby. 

Alan was employed as a School Master when he enlisted into the Welsh Regiment in December 1914. His father's employment was recorded as a storekeeper although he had previuously served as a gunner in the Royal Garrison Artillery seeing active overseas service. Alan was quickly promoted to the rank of Sergeant.

Following his discharge from the Army he was granted a commission into The Royal Flying Corps in September 1917. Second Lieutenant Bosweel servid with 105 and 109 Squadron's before joining 108 squadron in July 1918 as a Pilot. He had a total of 81 flying hours by October 1918. His younger brother Percy was also killed in action in Gallipoli during 1915.

Second Lieutenants Boswell and Gundill were flying as a tandem crew in DH9 D1080 on a bombing raid in the locale of Menin when they went missing on 2 October 1918. The Officer Commanding No. 108 Squadron RAF stated that they had left the aerodrome at 1027 hours and were last seen flying at 3,000 feet, west of the objective. When they failed to return it was documented they may have lost their way in the clouds before being shot down.

The service was conducted by Reverend (Captain Leader) Adrian Klos RAF.

Reading by Squadron Leader Mark Graham XI(F) Sqn RAF

A text by Russell Evans, Great Nephew of Alan Boswell.

Prayer by Sergeant Jack Yder XI(F) Sqn RAF

The Exhortation by Corporal Michael Langlands XI(F) Sqn RAF

The Last Post  by SAC Jack Wilson, Trumpter of the Central Band of the Royal Air Force.

The Reveille

The Kohima Epitaph by SAC(T) harry Phipps XI(F) Sqn RAF

And then wreaths were laid by the military and civilian authorities as well as by the family of Alan Boswell.

The Union Jack was handed over to the family.

And the researchers already thinking about other identifications.

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