Second Lieutenant Colin Race
Royal Engineers

Town Memorial World War II

Colin Race is on both the Leatherhead
and Fetcham War Memorials

Second Lieutenant

Service Number 314388
Died 15/05/1944
Aged 24
Royal Engineers
Son of Frederick William and Florence Elsie Race, of Fetcham, Surrey.
Location: Lincolnshire, United Kingdom
Cemetery/memorial reference: Sec. H. Grave 169 North.

Lincolnshire Echo
Thursday 18 May 1944
Lieutís Fatal 15-Yard Ride

VERDICT of accidental death was recorded by the Lincoln Deputy Coroner (Mr. C. R. Scorer) at the inquest in Lincoln yesterday on Second-Lieutenant Colin Race (24), Royal Engineers of Wales, who died on May 15 as a result of injuries received during training on May 11.

Frederick William Race said that he saw his son prior to his death, and he said that no one was to blame, the mishap being purely accidental. Mr. Scorer also said no blame was attached to anybody. Sec.-Lieut. R. Kirkland, R.E., said he was driving a bulldozer on the training ground and told Race that he was taking the vehicle for maintenance work necessitating driving it about 150 yards. Race climbed on to the arm of the seat and the vehicle moved off. They had gone, about 15 yards when heard a cry. He immediately stopped the vehicle, and saw Race lying on the ground.

Not Permitted

Second-Lieut. J. D. Brown, who was also on the vehicle, said they went over a slight bump. He heard Race cry out and saw him hanging by one foot. Major D. G. A. Taylor, R.E., said that trainees were not allowed to ride as Race was doing. Lieut.-Colonel H. Simmons, R.A.M.C., said Race, on admission to hospital, was conscious and was suffering from a fracture of the spine.

Recording the verdict, Mr. Scorer said that apparently the bulldozer went over bump in the ground which caused Race to overbalance and catch his foot in the machine, which in turn caused him to hit his back.

His life

He was born 30 May 1920 at 52, Grand Avenue, Muswell Hill.

The report of the inquest into his death stated he was from Wales. According to his Probate Record he had been living at Cottesloe, Wynnstay Road, Old Colwyn, Denbighshire.

His father was Frederick William Race, who at the time of Colin's death was described as a retired Civil Servant. He was born 25 October 1885 in the Queens Park area of London. He died 11 March 1964 in the Royal Cornwall Infirmary, Truro, Cornwall.

Colin's mother was Florence Elsie Williams born 13 February 1891, in the Grays Inn area of London. She died on 11 April 1976 at the North Devon Infirmary, Barnstaple, Devon.

Frederick and Florence were married on 19 September 1914 at  Mount View Congregational Church, Stroud Green.

They also had a daughter, Margery Helen (1916-2008) born at 72, Queens Avenue, Finchley (Urban District) and a second son, Roger E Race, born 1927 Hatfield, Hertfordshire, died 2020.

In the September 1939 England & Wales Register:

What is Colin Race's connection with this area?

The connection appears to be with his parents, post war, which has been established via the Electoral Registers:
1945 1946 Cobham Road, North side, 18 Sunmead Close: Frederick & Florence
1949 1952 40 Bell Lane Fetcham: Frederick, Florence, Roger
1953 1954 Lindisfarne, Bell Lane, Fetcham: Frederick & Florence
1955 1956 Dellcot, Croft Avenue, Dorking: Frederick & Florence

Can anyone can shed further light on how Colin came to be named on both the Fetcham and Leatherhead War Memorials? At present it appears to the editor that his parents wished his name to appear on a nearby memorial. Perhaps they had moved to this area during WW2?

Colin Race is remembered on these memorials
Fetcham War Memorial
Leatherhead Town Memorial
Leatherhead RBL Roll of Honour, Leatherhead Parish Church

the website editor would like to add further information on this casualty
e.g. a photo of him, his headstone, and of any recollections of him

last updated 16 Jul 20