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Thomas, Robert Dalzell Dillon (1922-1944) | by sherborneschoolarchives
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Thomas, Robert Dalzell Dillon (1922-1944)

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: Robert Dalzell Dillon Thomas (1922-1944), born 30 May 1922, son of Lt. Meredith Dillon Thomas MC (1894-1979) (formerly of the Grenadier Guards; Assistant Master at Sherborne School 1921-1954) and Rachel Marion Dalzell Thomas of The Manor House, Sherborne, Dorset.

 

Attended Sherborne Preparatory School.

 

Attended Sherborne School (Day boy and Abbey House) September 1936-April 1941; 6th form (history); Latin Prose prize 1940; House Prefect; XXX Blazer (1940); 1st Class Gym; PT Instructor with Badge; Sergeant in JTC; member of Duffers, Eclectics and Interpretes; Editor of The Shirburnian.

 

Hertford College, Oxford University.

 

WW2, Lieutenant, 3rd Bn. Grenadier Guards. Shot by a sniper near the River Arno, Florence, Italy, on 2-3 August 1944, aged 22.

 

Buried at 4 & 6 Divs Military Cemetery, Montevarchi and reburied on 3 March 1945 at Arezzo War Cemetery, VI. A. 8. Inscription on his headstone: 'A Christian Gentleman, Artist, Poet and Soldier. He Lives for Ever More.' www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/2097995/thomas,-rober...

 

Sherborne town war memorial.

 

Sherborne School: War Memorial Staircase; Book of Remembrance; Abbey House roll of honour.

 

Author of 'The Notebook of a Lieutenant in the Italian Campaign' (privately published, 1946): a compilation of letters and poems.

 

Obituary, 'The Shirburnian', December 1944: 'Perhaps it may not seem superfluous to write a few words in affectionate tribute to two contemporaries and friends, Bob Thomas and Anthony Rawlins. Much that can be said of one is true of the other, for they were among the most gentle, humble, and single-minded of people, good without being self-righteous, and loyal without asking for any recognition or return. Coming to Sherborne together in September 1936, to the same House and form, they died in Italy and Normandy within a few weeks of each other. Neither of them attained any special distinction at School, though Bob was a House Prefect. By those who did not know them intimately, Bob will probably best be remembered as a runner with a fine determination and beautiful style, and Anthony for his very sensitive performance as Viola in 'Twelfth Night' at the age of fifteen. But by those who had the good fortune to be their friends it is not for prowess in any field of school activity that they will chiefly be remembered, but for their high ideals, devotion to their homes, love of beautiful things, and enjoyment of the simple pleasures of the countryman. They both possessed to a remarkable degree the ability to see what was best in others and pass over without unpleasantness what was less good, unconsciously giving more than they hoped to receive. And now, in the same spirit, they have given all that they had, and their example will long survive them.'

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Taken on August 1, 2013