About John Geoffrey Appleyard
Major John Geoffrey Appleyard DSO MC and Bar (20 December 1916 – 1943) was a British Special Air Service (SAS) officer. Appleyard was born in Bramley. He was educated at Bootham School in York, where he combined academic success with natural history and roof-climbing and at Caius College, Cambridge, where he obtained a first in Engineering and a rowing blue, while he was also competing as a highly successful international skier. He was commissioned into the Royal Army Service Corps in 1939. His war exploits as a commando on special service and with the SAS culminated with the SAS landing on Pantelleria and soon after that his loss when his plane crashed on its return from reconnoitring the foothills of Etna. Describing him ‘Popski’ says, "He was one of the few officers who had developed the technique of the small scale raid: the care he took of his men made him stand out among brother officers who were too excited by the prospect of adventure to think of anybody but their own selves."