This is the third part in a series of posts concerning Italians who served as agents for I.S.9 (Intelligence School 9 of the Central Mediterranean Force).
I.S.9′s chief mission was support and rescue of escaped POWs and evaders (E&Es) stranded in enemy territory. I.S.9 was a division of M.I.9 (British Directorate of Military Intelligence Section 9), a department of the War Office during WW II.
Thanks to researcher Brian Sims for access to his archives of I.S.9 files from the British National Archives.
Born on February 27, 1915 in San Marcello.
Ernesto was a woodcutter at Abetone. He was called to the Italian Army in 1938, but left the army in 1939 because of a knee injury. He joined “Gino Bozzi” Brigade (a unit, apparently operating in the Apennines of Pistoia, of the “Garibaldi” partisan brigades)—Ospedale—in May 1944.
Ernesto had intimate knowledge of the region from Modena to Pistoia. He spoke French. He held a true identity card for Abetone.
He was employed by Captain B. G. McGibbon-Lewis, No. 5 Field Section, as an agent/guide on January 10, 1945. His name during employment was Didon. No false identification was issued to him.
He ceased to be employed on April 27, 1945 because his services were no longer required due to the Allied advance. After being paid off, he returned to his home.
Born on August 4, 1914 in Moglia di Mantova.
Attito was a paratrooper in the “Nembo” Division of the Italian Army until August 8, 1943. From then he was in service with the Second Regiment, Special Air Service, of the British Army until February 28, 1944, and with I.S.9, No. 1 Field Section from that date.
He had a good, first-hand, general knowledge of practically all of Northern Italy.
His special qualifications were that he was a parachutist, a second-class telegraphist, and a good typist.
Identity document were, “all taken away from him by American patrols when he was captured returning to our lines after mission, and it has been impossible to trace the documents in question.”
Attilio’s name during I.S.9 employment was Roberto de Medici. A false identity card was issued to him in that name, which was destroyed while he was returning from a mission in November 1944.
He ceased to be employed on June 14, 1945, due to lack of work. He was paid off by No. 1 Section and sent to Field Headquarters. On that same day, he proceeded to Moglia di Mantova for 6 weeks leave. He was to report to Italian authorities at Siena on August 1, 1945.
Born on March 26, 1915 at in Casola Valsenio, Ravenna
He served as a Sergeant Major in the Italian Army for six years, three of which were in Yugoslavia. He walked back to Italy after the Armistice.
Giuseppe was with the 36th Brigata “Garibaldi” partisan unit for six months.
He had local knowledge of Romagna and Veneto. He had an automobile license.
On February 2, 1945 he was employed in No. 2 Field Section as an agent. He ceased to be employed on March 2, 1945 in order to join a special partisan brigade.
Born on August 19, 1899 in Vicenza.
Guido was a lawyer in Vicenza until 1940. He served as a captain in the Italian Army, French front, and was mentioned in dispatches. He was on the Yugoslav front in February 1942, and also in North Africa. He was decorated for his service.
In October 1943, during the Italian Campaign in Northeastern Italy, he travelled to Rome as a partisan representative. He was in Rome until its liberation. Guido served as Committee of National Liberation (CNL) representative with the Allied Military Government (AMG), 10 Corps. He joined I.S.9 through a friend, IONACH.
Next of kin listed on his I.S.9 record is his wife, Maria Amelia Grimaldi De Boni.
He had local knowledge of Venice, Vicenza, Padua, Verona, and other locations in Italy.
He spoke French fairly well.
In September 1944, Guido was employed by Captain McGibbon Lewis, No. 5 Field Section, as an agent.
Guido’s name during I.S.9 employment was Giulio Ronzani. He was issued a false identity card and driver’s license for Bologna, as well as a permit to travel to “Bologna Todt,” which apparently refers to activities of the German Todt Organization, which was involved in building fortifications along the Gothic Line using forced labor.
Born May 19, 1918 in Popoli (Pescara Province)
On leaving school in 1936, Domenico volunteered in the Italian Air Force (IAF), where he served as a sergeant in Italy and Africa (April 1939–November 1941). At the time of the Armistice, he was in a hospital near Treviso. He went home on sick leave and then crossed the line. He rejoined the Italian Air Force at Bari and then volunteered for special service with I.S.9.
Domenico was employed by the I.S.9 Advanced Headquarters (West) A Force in Bari in the capacity of wireless telecommunications (W/T) operator. He was attached from the IAF depot in Bitonto.
He was issued the following false documents: an Arbieterausweis (worker permit) in the name Raoul Ravetta, Bologna (issued July 14, 1944); and a Bescheinigung ID issued at Bologna (issued January 10, 1945).
He ceased to be employed on May 12, 1945 due to lack of further work. He was paid off and granted four weeks leave at Parma, after which he was to report to the IAF. He was given truck as far as Modena on May 13.