New Providence District Bahamas
|Cemetery notes and/or description:|
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission was established by Royal Charter in May 1917 and continues to mark and maintain the graves of members of the forces of the Commonwealth who died in the two World Wars. The Nassau War Cemetery was constructed in the early 1940's when the graves were initially marked by crosses. In the late 1950's the crosses were replaced by headstones provided by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. The Cemetery was consecrated by the Bishop of The Bahamas, The Right Reverend Spence Burton. The Cemetery has undergone various changes over the years, following damage by several hurricanes and lately in the form of vandalism.
Sixty Commonwealth War dead of the First and Second World Wars are commemorated in the Nassau War Cemetery, The cemetery also contains two non-World War graves, those of Hilary St George Saunders CBE MC, the official RAF Historian and Group Captain L W Brabizon Rees, VC, OBE, MC, AFC, both of whom died after the end of the Second World War.
In the entrance to the Cemetery are bronze panels forming part of the local war memorial erected by public subscription and which bear the names of airmen with no known grave who were killed while based in The Bahamas.
During the Second World War, Oakes Field was used by the Royal Air Force as a training base. Ali of the casualties commemorated in the Cemetery were airmen, including síx Czechs, who were serving in the RAF and who died ferrying aircraft or whilst on training duty. The other casualties include two from the Canadian Army, a South African and five contingents of the local Bahamian forces, two of the latter being from the First World War.