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Russell Johnson, Walter (1888-1940) | by sherborneschoolarchives
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Russell Johnson, Walter (1888-1940)

Sherborne School, UK, Book of Remembrance for former pupils who died in the Second World War, 1939-1945.


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Credit: Sherborne School Archives, Abbey Road, Sherborne, Dorset, UK, DT9 3AP.


Details: Walter Russell-Johnson (1888-1940), formerly Walter Russell Johnson, born 7 August 1888, son of Sir Walter Johnson, The Cedars, Upper Clapton, London. Married to Fanny Elizabeth Russell Johnson. Lived at Broken Hill, Northern Rhodesia (now Kabwe, Zambia).


Attended St Christophers, Eastbourne.


Attended Sherborne School (School House) September 1902-April 1905.


WW1, Lieutenant-Colonel in the 1/7th Bn., Essex Regiment, Gallipoli, Egypt and France. Awarded the DSO, CBE, and mentioned twice in despatches.


Staff-Colonel. L.of C., Russia, 1919.


Military Secretary to High Commissioner of Mesopotamia.


M.F.H. and Master of Badger and Otter Hounds in Cornwall.


WW2, Lieutenant-Colonel (retired), Essex Regiment. Civilian War Dead. Travelling as a passenger on the 'Dunbar Castle' from his home at Broken Hill, Northern Rhodesia (now Kabwe, Zambia) to England to enlist. The 'Dunbar Castle' was sunk on 9 January 1940 by a German mine in the English Channel off the North Goodwins while in a convoy. Walter Russell Johnson was the only passenger to drown. His body was later washed ashore covered in oil


Commemorated at:

Civilian War Dead 1938-1945 Roll of Honour, St George’s Chapel, Westminster Abbey, London


Sherborne School: War Memorial Staircase; Book of Remembrance.


Obituary in 'The Shirburnian', March 1940: 'Lieutenant-Colonel Walter Russell-Johnson (a 1902-05) was the only passenger missing from the mined liner "Dunbar Castle." He served in the last war with the Essex Regiment in Gallipoli, Egypt and France, and then in North Russia as Staff Colonel; afterwards he was in India and Mesopotamia, where he was Military Secretary to the High Commissioner.'


Old Shirburnian Society Annual Report, October 1940:

'Russell-Johnson, Walter Russell, C.B.E., D.S.O. (a 1902-1905). in the War of 1914-1918 he served with the Essex Regiment in Gallipoli, Egypt and France and after the Armistice was employed on the Staff in North Russia; later he saw service in India and Mesopotamia and on his retirement was Military Secretary to the High Commissioner of the last named country. He was a keen hunting man, having been Master of two packs, one of foxhounds and one of beagles; he also managed packs of otter and badger hounds.'

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Taken on August 1, 2013