Royal Artillery

72 Anti-Tank Regiment

Died 5th July 1944

Aged 24

Commonwealth War Graves Commission


In memory of


621494D, 72 Anti-Tank Regt.
Royal Artillery


who died age 24 on 5 July 1944


Son of Nellie Smith, of Carterton, Oxfordshire


Remembered with Honour AREZZO WAR CEMETERY





Jehu and Amy Smith were born in Curbridge, Oxfordshire in 1852 and 1855 respectively. They married in 1873 and lived in Curbridge. By 1881 they had four children.

In the 1901 census they had six more children at home. The four named in 1881 had either died, married or were at work and are not listed there.


Nellie Smith was born in 1890. In the 1911 census she is aged 21 and is a pupil–teacher. i.e. usually someone , aged 13, who has stayed on at their school and is now teaching but not qualified.


The family moved to Carterton between 1911 and 1920. During the war Nellie moved to London where she worked as a nurse. Although single, she gave birth to a son before returning to Carterton which remained her home for the rest of her life. She looked after her ageing parents. Her father died in 1933 aged 81, her mother in 1942 aged 87.


Harry Smith was born in 1920. His birth was registered at Witney in the July-September quarter.

Harry was enlisted as a Gunner in the Royal Artillery 72 Anti tank regiment in 1939.

He died on the 5th of July 1944 near Arezzo in Italy and is buried there.

Harry is remembered by his family as being a talented magician.


Harry's home in Rock Road, Carterton One of the original prefabricated houses



The Gustav Line

was the most rearward of the three German defensive lines on the Italian peninsula south of Rome. Built along the Garigliano and Rapido rivers it was fortified with gun pits, concrete bunkers, turreted machine-gun emplacements, barbed wire and minefields.

The Gustav Line was held by 15 divisions of the German Army under the command of General Albert Kesselring. Several attempts were made to breach the western flank of the Gustav Line during January 1944 when General John Lucas and US 5th Army landed at Anzio.


However, it was not until May 1944 that

Operation Diadem under the leadership of General Harold Alexander that Allied forces managed to breakthrough the Gustav Line. The line eventually fell in May 1944 and as the Germans withdrew. Rome was taken by the Allies on 3 June.


The Germans made a stand in front of Arezzo early in July 1944 and there was fierce fighting before the town was taken on 16 July by the 6th Armoured Division with the aid of the 2nd New Zealand Division.


Cemetery at Arezzo

The site for this cemetery was selected in November 1944 and graves were brought into it from the surrounding area.





Marriages Jun 1873

BIGGS Amy Witney 3a 1062 Smith Jehu Witney 3a 1062


Births Jun quarter 1890

Smith Nellie Witney 3a 845


Births Sep quarter 1920

Smith Harry Smith Witney 3a 2208 (Mother Nellie Smith (nee Smith)


SMITH, Jehu Head Married M 59 1852

Farm Labourer Curbridge Oxon

SMITH, Amy Wife Married 37 years F 56 1855 Home Work Curbridge Oxon

SMITH, Nellie Daughter Single F 21 1890 Pupil Teacher Curbridge Oxon SMITH, Fred Son Single M 18 1893 Shepherd On Farm Curbridge Oxon SMITH, James Son Single M 16 1895

Under Carter On Farm Curbridge Oxon SMITH, Maud Daughter F 13 1898 School Curbridge Oxon

SMITH, John Grandson M 3 1908 Standlake Oxon Parish:Curbridge

Address: Curbridge Bampton R S 0 County: Oxfordshire


These sites cover the ox18 area of Oxfordshire England, including  the following villages, OX18, Alvescot, Bampton, Black Bourton, Burford, Broadwell, Carterton, Clanfield, Kelmscott, Kencot, Langford, Lechlade, RAF Broadwell, Shilton, Parish Pump, Oxfordshire Events,