One year on- the village remembers
A report by the late Doug Everitt on the events of 11 November 2006
On Friday, 10th November, I had the privilege of meeting the daughter of one of the crew of Lancaster Bomber PB761 and the one remaining crew who was unable to attend the memorial that we had to mark the 60th year of the tragedy on the 16th of January 2005. Felicity Griffiths was born 2 months after her father Flt Sgt Bryant Cornell, who was the Navigator of the aircraft sadly died.
Also I met Bill Pridmore, he is the 3rd of the four who survived. The other was Sgt Ken Hollins who sadly died in recent years. It was while I was talking to Bill that he asked me a question, why did we do this for them? At the time I could only say because we liked doing it. This to me did not seem a very good answer, and it was when I got home that thought of the reason.
First I thought of the gathering at the crash site and to see Ron Hunwicks and John Smyrk laying the wreath to their departed members of that night. Then I thought of the church service, how the church was full and how visibly moved the congregation was when the tape of a Lancaster’s engines was played. And finally, I thought of our village hall where we were able to mingle and talk to each other.
It was then that I knew the full answer to Bill’s question why we did it. And it was answered for me by the young and the not so young who came up to me and I am sure to others who helped and said “Thank you, we will never forget this day as long as we live”.
That to me was the highest praise to those men and others like them. I am sure that looking down on us there were those that said “For remembering us – Thank you”.
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