The Number of Men Evacuated From the Dieppe Beaches
It is impossible to determine with complete certainty the number of men evacuated from the Dieppe beaches on 19 August 1942. The difficulty is that, although fairly reliable statistics are available for the men of each unit who returned to England (see page 389), there is in most cases no basis for settling precisely how many of these men had actually landed.
The 14th Canadian Army Tank Regiment reported after the operation that only three men of this unit had landed and returned (only one having been a member of a tank crew). Returned personnel of Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal completed questionnaires which indicate that, of 103 individuals who filled these out, 52 had landed. Three more who did not complete questionnaires are known to have landed and returned. On the basis of statistics of men returned, some 20 others were in hospital or otherwise unavailable to complete the forms; assuming that half of these had landed, some 65 all ranks of this unit landed and returned to England. The report of the Commanding Royal Engineer 2nd Division calculates that 169 R.C.E. personnel landed and only 17 were evacuated. The other major units on the main beaches can be dealt with only by reviewing the fortunes of the tank landing craft in which some parties of their personnel were carried; it can be assumed that nearly all men carried in assault craft landed. In the case of the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry, 12 men were in L.C.T. 15, which did not touch down, and some men may not have landed from L.C.T. 6; we may perhaps assume altogether a total of about 25 not landed. The Essex Scottish had no large party on craft which did not touch down; in this instance it may be safe to assume that not more than 10 did not land. There seems to be no basis for calculation in the case of the Royal Marines, Royal Canadian Signals and miscellaneous units; it would seem to be conservative to assume for them a total of 50 men as landed and evacuated. On this admittedly unsatisfactory basis, the following very approximate figures emerge for men evacuated from the main beaches in front of Dieppe:
14th Army Tank Regiment 3 R.H.L.I. 192 Essex Scottish 41 Fusiliers Mont-Royal 65 R.C.E. 17 Miscellaneous 50 Total 368
As for the units on the Pourville beach, virtually the whole of their strength was in assault craft, and it may perhaps be assumed that not more than 10 men in each case were not landed. From this we get the following figures for men landed and evacuated:
Camerons of Canada 258 South Saskatchewan Regt 348 Total 601
From the Puys beach only a very few individuals who landed succeeded in returning--perhaps half a dozen. This would give a total of 975 for all the Canadian beaches.
In addition we have from the flank beaches the whole strength of No. 4 Commando (less unreturned casualties), and 20 men of No. 3 Commando. This amounts to 247, and would raise the grand total evacuated to 1222 all ranks. It must again be emphasized that this is only an approximation. But to say that 1200 men were brought away would probably not be very far wrong.
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