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Winter War Volunteers, Finland.

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Winter War Volunteers, Finland.

Postby Grandy » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:08 pm

Does anyone have any information on the lads who volunteered to go to Finland in 1939 when they were invaded by the Russians?

My father in law, Peter Cooper, was one of the men and, according to Justin Brooke’s book ‘The Volunteers’ he spent some time working alongside 2 men called Humphries and Maund who tried to make their way back to England on their own but disappeared. I now have details of a possible eye witness account of what may have happened to these men and would like to try and contact their families.
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Re: Winter War Volunteers, Finland.

Postby phsvm » Thu Dec 07, 2017 9:36 pm

Have you tried contacting the author to see if he can give you any leads?

Do you have any other information, besides surnames, about the two individuals?
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Re: Winter War Volunteers, Finland.

Postby Grandy » Sat Dec 09, 2017 7:33 pm

Hi phsvm

Unfortunately the author died a few years ago; I did try writing to his last address in the hope that his family might be there still but got no reply.

Henry Arthur Humphries was born in Liverpool in 1896 and Eric George Maund was born in Caerphilly in 1912. They were billeted in a place called Arvselen, near Malung in Sweden and disappeared on 6th September 1940 after 'borrowing' a couple of bicycles. They had made no secret of their desire to head to Norway and try to steal a boat and had even been seen talking to a Norwegian who may have supplied them with a gun and could possibly have been their guide through the forests.

The new eyewitness account comes from a Norwegian lady who lives near the border and remembers, as a small child, having two British men staying with them for a short while. She then adds that, shortly after these men left, she heard the sound of gunfire from the forest and was told that the men had been caught by the Germans.

It may not have been Humphries and Maund but the timing and positioning seems too much of a coincidence.

My father in law, Peter 'Wolf' Cooper, was also one of the volunteers and stayed with Humphries and Maund at Arvselen but fell in love with a local girl (my mother in law) and stayed behind when he was almost certainly asked to accompany the others in their attempt to return home.
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Re: Winter War Volunteers, Finland.

Postby brunes08 » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:50 pm

I looked up the two names you have given on the search site duckduckgo. This led me to a web site that may be of use to you as it lists all the volunteers and has a forum. The site is Hope that might be of help.
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