Regiment: Royal Engineers
Family information: Son of Mr & Mrs Tinkler of Hill Garth, Knottingley
Pontefract & Castleford Express 5 July 1942 p 5 (+ photo)
“MISSING IN THE MIDDLE EAST
The photograph herewith is of Sapper Jesse Tinkler, the son of Mr & Mrs Tinkler of Hill Garth, Knottingley. Official word was received on Monday that Sapper Tinkler was posted missing in the Middle East on June 4th. Before joining the Army he was employed by Messrs Jackson Bros of Knottingley.”
Pontefract & Castleford Express 21 August 1942 p 4
“FOUND IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Sapper Jesse Tinkler, the son of Mr & Mrs Tinkler of Hill Garth, Knottingley, who was stated in “The Express” some weeks ago to be missing in the Middle East, is now known to be a prisoner of war in Italian hands.”
The story of the death of another Knottingley soldier, John Jacobs, was handed down by Jesse Tinkler. Jesse worked as a Joiner at Jackson Glassworks and John Jacobs had been a friend of his from school days in Knottingley. Jesse served with 2nd Bomb Disposal Company in the Royal Engineers. He was in the Western Desert and on 31 May 1942, probably in the Battle of Gazala, he dived for cover into a trench. To his surprise when he looked up, next to him was John Jacobs, his old school pal! Jacobs stood up to shake his hand and was unfortunately shot. Five days later Tinkler was reported missing and had been taken prisoner by the Italians. He was later transferred to Stalag X1A in Germany, so from 4 June 1942 to 17 April 1945 he was a prisoner of war.
On repatriation he visited Jacobs’ mother to relay what had happened, and although they had received the standard British Army “killed in action” letter, they had still lived in hope.