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Durham County Record Office: the official archive service for County Durham and Darlington

Captain Stanley Levitt

Stanley Levitt joined the 5th Battalion The Durham Light Infantry in about 1938, as a territorial, or part-time, soldier. He was promoted from Battery Sergeant Major to Lieutenant (Quartermaster) in March 1945. He became a Captain in 1946.

Photograph of Captain Stanley Levitt (D/DLI 7/404/28/94) - Copyright © Durham County Record Office.
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Photograph of Stanley Levitt with girl, 1939 (D/DLI 7/404/28/3) - Copyright © Durham County Record Office
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On the outbreak of the Second World War, he was called up to full time service and served with what became the 113th Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment, The Royal Artillery.

This photograph (above, right), 'Mobilised for War', was taken at Skelton, North Yorkshire, on 24 August 1939.

The Regiment was in the UK, defending the country against air attack, until 1944.

Photograph of Lance-Corporal Levitt with colleagues, 1940 (D/DLI 7/404/28/5) - Copyright © Durham County Record Office.
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This photograph was taken at Billingham in February 1940. Levitt, as a lance-corporal, is pictured second from the left.

Stanley Levitt's commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel W.H. Mather, wrote a testimonial for him after the war, in which he mentioned that Levitt had refused the chance to become an officer three times in case he missed being posted overseas [D/DLI 7/404/14].

Photograph of Stanley Levitt after Normandy landings, 1944 (D/DLI 7/404/28/15) - Copyright © Durham County Record Office.
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His Regiment took part in the Normandy landings in June 1944, landing on Juno beach. Here, he is pictured 'Above Sword Beach' on 17 June 1944.

Visit BBC History: D Day Landings to see a map of the Normandy landings. Please note this link will take you off the Record Office website. To return to this page, please use your Browser back button.

As the Regiment pushed through France and Belgium, towards Nijmegen in Holland, Stanley Levitt showed himself to be an 'outstanding leader'. His commanding officer, Colonel Mather, described how 'BSM [Battery Sergeant Major] Levitt made it his special duty to visit gun positions, doing much by his cheerfulness towards maintaining a high standard of morale.'

Levitt was an expert in mines; his knowledge in clearing minefields saved many lives.

Certificate that Stanley Levitt has been Mentioned in Despatches (D/DLI 7/404/7) - Copyright © Durham County Record Office.
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Shortly after the army crossed the River Rhine, in March 1945, Levitt was promoted to Lieutenant by Field Marshal Montgomery.

He was recommended for a medal for his bravery in this action, but was awarded a Mention in Despatches.

See a full transcript of the Certificate that Warrant Officer Levitt has been Mentioned in Despatches.