Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:33 am

21 Aug 44
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COMMENTS: OK, this is were it “starts” to get confusing. HQ’s orders them to proceed with a 130 Foot long bridge, CLASS 18.....I am confused if this is the SAME bridge they have been talking about in previous days OR a NEW bridge. My “gut” tells me it’s the SAME bridge.....again, they give no Map Reference, so I don’t know where it is. They keep saying Troarn, but this could just mean the “vicinity of Troarn”......or maybe it IS IN TROARN as it says “bridge river”......and the river GOES THRU TROARN.........note: later when they are working on other bridges, these are shorter, as they are only bridging canals.

Anyway, because of the length, 130 feet, in order to “stay up” it needs to be a Triple Single (three panels wide, one row high) bridge which makes it “weight bearing capacity” a Class 30.

Now looking again at the Dairy, I know they built a CLASS 30 right from the start.

This map shows TWO possible locations of the above bridge, I THINK its the second circle, closer to Samson, as this is the RIVER, the other seems to be a canal or smaller tributary
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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:50 am

I think this is helping, as I work on each day.....the picture SEEMS to be clearer to me

More to come

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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:01 pm

22 Aug 44
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COMMENTS: After reading the day by day, and now “this day”, I THINK I’ve sorted it out in my mind (but i have been wrong in the past). They COMPLETE the bridge.....but because of the heavy traffic on the road (coming from CAEN I would suspect) and they are using the ford beside this bridge site. They decide to build the bridge on the NORTH side. I believe this is in SAMSON area, so they built in in the town, and launched it. This way the vehicles could continue to use the ford

On completion, they asked permission to build the Stalker Bridge...........again this is my guess, that the bridge was actually in Troarn/Samson.......I’ll see if I can find more info on it???

THEN, it mentions that 3 Platoon is sent up the road to due maintenance on the bridge at MAP REFERENCE 237720......so this is a different bridge (Not the one that was built above, I believe)

Map below. RED SQUARE is where I believe the Stalker Bridge was.........YELLOW SQUARE is were 3 Platoon went to due bridge maintenance (and existing bridge or bridge built by another RCE Company)
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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:25 pm

Here’s two screen shots of the “bridge area”. This is where I am Assuming the Stalker Bridge was

On the close up, I have measured the river, at it is 100 feet wide at this point, so a 130 foot bailey bridge makes total sense.

Also, the road to the bottom that goes to the small dam, could have been the route to the ford??? Then this makes sense that the traffic moved almost to the bridge and turned right to the ford. Then it “totally” makes sense they built the bridge on the other side and launched to ‘back”
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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Phil » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:26 pm

There is a plaque at that bridge currently, trying to find a clearer photo so we can read it.
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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Phil » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:32 pm

This plaque was placed by the municipality of Troarn on June 5, 1986 to commemorate Major J.C.A Roseveare and his men who blew up this bridge at dawn on June 6, 1944
This thread may be helpful, a lot of images and talk of bridges. Though from the airborne perspective, but still.

http://www.thefewgoodmen.com/thefgmforu ... rne.21082/
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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:40 pm

Phil wrote:
Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:32 pm
This plaque was placed by the municipality of Troarn on June 5, 1986 to commemorate Major J.C.A Roseveare and his men who blew up this bridge at dawn on June 6, 1944
This thread may be helpful, a lot of images and talk of bridges. Though from the airborne perspective, but still.

http://www.thefewgoodmen.com/thefgmforu ... rne.21082/
Ahhhh, this tells us that the bridge in Troarn/Samson was destroyed (by us)......so now to figure out if it was the Stalker Bridge that replaced it

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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:04 pm

Read the link.......this could be a possibility, but not entirely sure. I clipped a couple of photo’s of the bridge they took out. Again, I’m not possitive this was the bridge, it may have been the bridge over the canal that’s closer to Troarn. If it is the right bridge, again I not the road “down” to the river to one side.......could this be the road to the ford???
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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:22 pm

Found this:

6th Airborne Division - 3rd Parachute Brigade - 8th Parachute Battalion - War Diaries

1700 - Lt. Brown returned from TROARN. He stated that they had met a little opposition in TROARN which had been dealt with and the R.E.s had increased the gap in the bridge to 40 feet. 7 prisoners were brought back from a M.G. post which was attacked. They were identified as 21 Pz Div.




Comments: I have a feeling this isn’t the bridge. The “gap” they blew was 40 feet wide. This would NOT need a 130 foot bridge to repair it.....my thoughts that this may have been the smaller bridge, nearer to Troarn. Haven’t found a Map Reference for it yet??

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Re: Sgt. Charles May, Royal Canadian Engineer

Post by Temujin » Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:32 pm

BUT.......story is going back and forth, found this:

8 Parachute Battalion with 3 Parachute Squadron less 3 Troop were on DZ "K" to attack two bridges at Bures and the main road bridge beyond Troarn at St. Samson.

http://www.pegasusarchive.org/normandy/ ... eveare.htm

COMMENTS: now this seems to indicate that indeed this was the bridge beside St Samson???

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