Search for family of Mansfield Woodhouse soldier could be ‘final piece of historic tank tragedy DNA jigsaw’

No one has yet come forward after Chad submitted an appeal from German amateur historian Debbie Bülau to trace the family of Anthony Granville Frank Walter Taylor-Hurst.

Anthony was only 19 when the Sherman tank he was traveling in exploded while crossing a bridge in Kutenholz, near Hamburg, on May 1, 1945.

Four other Cold Stream Guards were killed in the tragedy, which happened just a week before the end of World War II on May 8. The soldiers were on their way to liberate a nearby town.

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Debbie Bülau who led commemoration efforts and researched fallen British soldiers – but they are still missing information on the family of Anthony Taylor Hurst of Mansfield Woodhouse

Anthony and his comrades, Lance Sergeant John Thomas Green, 25, and Guardsmen Ronald Gilbert Moore, 21, Stanley Somerset, 19, and Frank Lock, 27, were among 14 British soldiers who died in the area.

They were later commemorated by German citizens, with headstones paid for by an anonymous German donor.

The queen would later thank the citizens, as one of the soldiers was the royal bodyguard, Lieutenant Robin Tudsbery. He was 25 when the armored car he was in exploded near the tank explosion. He had previously babysat the young Princess Elizabeth and her sister Margaret, before serving in Germany.

Now Debbie is still hoping someone might hold the key to finding Taylor Hurst’s family.

Searching with the metal detector is Frank Hoferichter. Human bones and tank parts were found during the search for deceased British soldiers. Do you know the family of Anthony Taylor Hurst of Mansfield Woodhouse?

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Using a metal detector, the researchers explored the area where the explosions took place, discovered a piece of the tank and some human bones, including a pelvis and leg bones.

Recent DNA tests from family members of other soldiers were collected.

Debbie said: ‘We have traced the family of the other soldiers’ members, in our search we have made some wonderful friendships and relationships. It would be wonderful to reunite with Anthony Taylor Hurst’s family.

Anthony Taylor Hurst commemorated on a stone in Germany with his four colleagues.

“We took DNA, although some of the families found were not suitable because they were not related by blood, but married in the families. What we need is to find the relatives of Taylor Hurst, he really is the last piece of the DNA puzzle.

“We recently found the family of Frank Lock’s brother. He is no longer alive, but he had five children and now the family is connected again and ready to take a DNA test.

“Only the Taylor-Hurst family can’t be tested, but if we have four out of five families that helps a lot, but I’m hoping to find that last tank crew family. The bones offer a clue of identity and will eventually be rebuilt buried.

Anthony GFW Hurst-Taylor was born in 1926 in Mansfield to Harry Hurst Taylor Rose (née Cooper) The couple had several children:

A piece of the Sherman tank found in Germany.

Anthony did not marry, but his brother Travers did. In 1951 he married a woman whose maiden name was “Smedley”. Travers had at least two children, Jennifer R born in 1951 and Michael, born in 1956).

Jennifer married William Smith in 1968 in Mansfield, the couple had one son, Mark William Smith (b. 1973) who still lives in the Mansfield area. He would be a great-nephew of Anthony

Debbie added: “Taylor-Hurst wasn’t an only child, so hopefully there’s still family there.”

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CWCG (Commnwealth War Graves Commission) entry for Private Mansfield Guardsman Taylor Hurst who died in a German tank tragedy at the end of WWII
Debbie Bülau is searching for the family of a Mansfield soldier killed there shortly before the end of World War II.
Are you related to the soldier in the Mansfield tank tragedy? This gravestone image posted on Debbie Bülau’s Facebook page in an effort to find her family. His name is below, here you can see the names of his colleagues who died with him.
One of the other deceased British soldiers Ronald Gilbert Moor
John Thomas Green blown up in the same tanks as Anthony Taylor Hurst
Frank and Veronica Lock
One of the Stanley Somerset soldiers
The CWCG Memorial to Anthony Taylor Hurst at Becklingen War Cemetery in Germany
Remembrance Day at Becklingen War Cemetery, Germany. The soldiers received special honor during the ceremony. Debbie Bülau gave a speech marking the lives of British soldiers and their families.

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