I recently exchanged several e-mails with Luigi Donfrancesco, who lives in Rome. His uncle, Andrea Scattini, was an Italian I.S.9 agent during the war.
I.S.9 was a sub-organization of special Allied operations unit “A” Force. I.S.9 formed escape chains to evacuate Allied escapers and evaders (E & Es) from enemy-occupied territory.
Luigi sent me photographs taken by Dr. Luigino Nespeca of a monument at Villa Stipa at Offida (Ascoli Piceno, Italy) that commemorates No. 5 Field Section of I.S.9, which produced the largest number of E & Es of any I.S.9 land unit in Italy.
See “I.S.9 History—Operations in Italy, Part 2” for detailed information on No. 5 Field Section.
Villa Stipa was one of the main bases of I.S.9 “Rat Line” rescues.
“My uncle Andrea Scattini is improperly placed with the shot [executed] patriots, but he should be with the fallen in service instead, because he was never captured,” Luigi clarified.
“Also, Don Domenico Orlandini was never shot nor dead (they erroneously thought so), but survived the war and died later in his sixties.”
Here are the names acknowledged on the memorial:
GUERRA DI LIBERAZIONE [War of Liberation]
N.5 A FORCE FED. SEC C OCAO.
A.M.G. MAGG. ROBB E CAP. R. W. LEWIS [Allied Military Government, Major (maggiore in Italian) A. Robb and U.S. Army Air Force Captain R. W. B. Lewis]
COMANDO RAT LINE
COMANDANTE CAP. G.A.R.I. [Genio Aeronautico Ruolo Ingegneri, Aeronautical Engineer Corps] STIPA LUIGI
COLLEGAMENTO VIA RADIO
CON ALGERI BARI E LANCIANO [wireless connection, Algiers with Bari and Lanciano]
SETTEMBRE 1943—18 GIUGNO 1944 [September 1943 to June 18, 1944]
FUCILATI [Shot, Executed]
FAUSTO SIMONETTI MOVM [Gold Medal of Military Valor, Medaglia d’oro al Valore Militare]—ASCOLI P [Ascoli Piceno]
MARIO MOOTES MAVM [Silver Medal of Military Valor, Medaglia d’Argento al Valore Militare]—PARACADUTISTA [paratrooper]—MONTALTO M [Montalto Marche]
DON DELFINO ANGELICI—MONTALTO M
N 3 PRIGIONIERI ALLEATI—MONTALTO M [Three Allied POWs (prigioniera di guerra alleati) shot in Montalto Marche]
N 3 ITALIANI—CASTIGNANO [Three Italians shot in Castignano]
CADUTI IN SERVIZIO [Fallen in Service]
ERMANNO FINOCCHI—FIRENZE [Florence]
RENATO ROSSI R.T. [Radio-Telegrapher, Radio-Telegrafista]—NORD ITALIA [Northern Italy]
FERITI E CATTURATI [Wounded and Captured]
ETTORE ZAMBALDI—GENERALE PILOTA [General Pilot, Italian Air Force]—FARAONE
DARIO CELANI—CAPITANO MARINA [Captain, Italian Navy]—FARAONE
DIEGO VECCHIARELLI—MONTALTO M.
EMIDIO AZZARRI—BOMBOLO [his agent cover name]—MAVM—OFFIDA
LEONARDO STIPA—APPIGNANO DEL TR.[Appignano del Tronto]
QUINTO STIPA—APPIGNANO DEL TR.
UGO UGUCCIONI RANIERI [di Sorbello (Bourbon del Monte)]
MAGG. MAC KEE [I.S.9 officer Major McKee]
VITTORIO DI FRISCIA
JACH RAYNER—POW INGL [ENGLISH]
ROBERTO LEVINE—POW PR FFF [Free French Forces]
NORADINO STIPA—CAP MARINA
MARGHERITA LO SCIUT
DON ANTONIO GALOSI
Here are further comments and clarifications from Luigi Donfrancesco:
“My uncle ANDREA (SCATTINI) was one of the original six agents in the group formed in Termoli in October 1943:
1) Uguccione RANIERI di Sorbello (Bourbon del Monte);
2) Don Domenico ORLANDINI;
3) Ermanno FINOCCHI;
4) Andrea SCATTINI;
5) Fausto SIMONETTI;
6) Augusto RUFFO di Calabria (brother of Paola, Queen of Belgium. He died on a torpedo Motor Boat in the first mission on November 1 or 2, 1943).
“Of the original group of six agents, only two survived the war: Count Uguccione RANIERI di Sorbello and the priest Don Domenico “Carlo” ORLANDINI.
“The three PRIGIONIERI DI GUERRA ALLEATI (Allied POWs) were shot on March 11, 1944 in Montalto Marche with Paratrooper MARIO MOOTES, who was trying to transport them to salvation in a truck. [These three men were L. H. J. Brown, D. Hollingsworth, and T. W. White.]
“Fausto SIMONETTI was awarded MOVM (Medaglia d’Oro al Valor Militare, Gold Medal for Valour or Bravery). He was shot on 6 June, 1944 (D-day), after two months of prison, interrogations and tortures.
“Ermanno FINOCCHI was killed by a mine (left by the retiring Germans), in Fiesole (outskirts of Florence) in August 1944.”
Captain Richard Warren Barrington LEWIS was American and was in the Torpedo Motorboat with Augusto RUFFO di Calabria on November 2, 1943, but swam ashore and survived, as did Raymond LEE-COURAUD, French, naturalized British, Captain of S.A.S. (Special Air Service).