John Parton Gabriel used to be an international athlete and had influental friends in Yugoslavia, Hungary and other countries in the Balkan, speaking fluent German, French and good Russian. He served as Intelligence Officer in No. 3 Military and Air Mission in France until being evacuated, afterwards serving as Captain in Royal Berkshire Regiment but soon being transferred to Special Operations Executive (SOE) and returning to special reconnaissance duty with No. 1 General Headquarters (GHQ) Liasion Regiment on 13 February 1941. Lost on passage as Civil Servant aboard Jonathan Holt en route from Liverpool to Takoradi in order to serve in Colonel Pollocks staff in Cairo.