While none of the HAC's regimental units were involved in fighting the Japanese in WWII, some of the c.4,000 HAC members commissioned into other units of the Armed Forces during the war served in this theatre. At least 49 members are so far known to have died in Asia, including eight who died as prisoners of war or who were never accounted for, with a further 68 who were PoWs and civilian internees liberated at the end of the war.
The HAC's medal collection has 22 medal groups with Burma Stars, including that of Lt Col D C M Collins (adm. 1924, later Royal Artillery) responsible for the custody of Japanese troops who had surrendered at Singapore. The HAC also holds a Japanese sword presented to Collins in February 1946 by Col H Arima, OC Japanese Troops in Singapore.
In post-war volumes of the Journal and the OCA newsletters the men who survived have recounted their memories of the war in Malaya, Singapore, India, Burma and the Pacific. Four members of the HAC's Old Comrades Association attended the VJ Day Parade on the 50th anniversary in August 1995, marching from Birdcage Walk to the Victoria Memorial in front of Buckingham Palace, then up the Mall and finishing at Horse Guards.
As the country marks the 75th anniversary of VJ Day on 15 August 2020, we encourage today's members to remember all those from the Company and men of the HAC's various regiments who served and died in the Second World War.
(Pictured: Lt Col D C M Collins' medal group, including his Burma Star)