D Day 75

German aircrew are buried in the CWG plot behind the church on Thorney Island, a former RAF station since occupied by the RA.
German war graves on Thorney Island b.jpg


Just one of the Luftwaffe crews:

German war graves on Thorney Island a.jpg
 
Wartime wren marks D Day 75 with HMS Drake | Royal Navy

Suzanne Sparrow who served in the WRNS during WW2 was one of the first females to become a small boats Coxswain.

She joined in 1942 at 17 and at her interview was asked what category she would like to serve with. Suzanne said Boats Crew and passed her examination as a Coxswain.

“We were trained as seaman, learning all about knots and drill in HMS Drake,” said Suzanne.

“It was really exciting I was working out of Flag Staff steps in the Dockyard before moving around to Saltash passage near the Tamar Bridge, where the Landing Craft base was.”

The Landing Craft base at Saltash was essential for the construction, care and maintenance of many of the small boats used on D Day, as well as training and embarkation point for the troops that sailed to Normandy.

“My job working as a Coxswain was purely wartime and in 1945 I was de-mobbed from the Royal Navy before getting married, eventually I set up the first English Language School in Plymouth, which has now been going for over 40 years.”

“I think it’s important to remember the part that HMS Drake and Devonport played in D Day and the young men who left here in 1944 for Normandy, and the D Day beaches in France.

“It is a great honour to be asked to lay this wreath and I am very proud of my wartime service as a Royal Navy Coxswain.”


Raleigh remembers Americans who stormed Omaha Beach | Royal Navy

And the hard by the River Lynher which is now Raleigh’s sea sense training centre, was built specially for D-Day preparations; it was nominally the embarkation point for elements of the 29th Division, who landed on Omaha.

“I remember well the 29th Division camping in the woodland surrounding Antony House and also the Wrens who occupied Antony House during that period of World War 2,” said Sir Richard Carew Pole, who was a child when the Americans were based on the estate and still lives in Antony House.

“The activity in the lead up to Operation Overlord in and around Jupiter Point was constant with the movement of troops and equipment on Ferry Lane.

“Then suddenly – and without warning – there was silence and they had all gone on route to the beaches in Normandy.”

As for Raleigh, it acted as headquarters for the Embarkation Transportation Corps under the overall command of Captain Charles Fenton Mercer Spotwood Quinby, Commanding Officer of the US Naval Advance Base in Plymouth.

The commemorative service, conducted by RN chaplain The Rev Andrew Corness, Royal Navy Chaplain, was held overlooking Jupiter Point.

“For Service personnel, in particular, it’s important to remember those who came before us and the sacrifice they made.


“Most of those who took part in the D-Day landings would have been of a similar age to our recruits,” said Raleigh’s Commanding Officer Captain Richard Harris.




 
Nowhere to the same degree. After all, the codes and markings on most Free Force aircraft usually gave a pretty good indication of the occupant's nationality, so even a cursory examination of intact wreckage would give the game away. Most of the Free aircrew did not try to hide their identity, and those with prior service at home sometimes even flew wearing elements of their old uniforms if available. 320 Sqn (NL) RAF produced some very interesting uniforms, on the ground at least, as most of its personnel were Cloggie matelots - RAF battledress plus Dutch naval headdress for example.

Free Dutch Squadrons painted the KLu orange triangle on their noses. They were very happy for the Germans to know who was giving them a kicking.
 
R4 has just interviewed a 94yo conscientious objector.

Added a bit of balance to how sh*t war really is. He worked with providing relief to bombed out and displaced persons, Manchester i think, first in uk and then into Europe.

Respect. He probably saw some right horrible things.
 
R4 has just interviewed a 94yo conscientious objector.

Added a bit of balance to how sh*t war really is. He worked with providing relief to bombed out and displaced persons, Manchester i think, first in uk and then into Europe.

Respect. He probably saw some right horrible things.
Perhaps if he’d have helped out at some of the liberated concentration camps he’d have realised why we were bombing Europe.

Regards,
MM
 
R4 has just interviewed a 94yo conscientious objector.

Added a bit of balance to how sh*t war really is. He worked with providing relief to bombed out and displaced persons, Manchester i think, first in uk and then into Europe.

Respect. He probably saw some right horrible things.

Sounds like one of the Quakers in their Friends Relief Service.
Fair dos to them, they are true pacifists but did what they could within the remit of their religious beliefs.
FWIW, if he was in the FRS, there’s a good chance he was involved in the relief mission to Bergen Belsen.

Friends Relief Service
 
Commemoration by the Canadians at Juno beach. Much sniffing by the CBC commentators that the Canadians merited only the French PM Edoard Phillippe and (Gasp!! Horror!!) no members of the Royal Family were in attendance. (The French president was with President Trump at Omaha Beach and Prince Charles was at Bayeaux.) Chippy little bar-stewards I must say. :?


Prince Charles.jpeg
 
Commemoration by the Canadians at Juno beach. Much sniffing by the CBC commentators that the Canadians merited only the French PM Edoard Phillippe and (Gasp!! Horror!!) no members of the Royal Family were in attendance. (The French president was with President Trump at Omaha Beach and Prince Charles was at Bayeaux.) Chippy little bar-stewards I must say. :?


View attachment 397765
I feel we should have been represented.
 

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Commemoration by the Canadians at Juno beach. Much sniffing by the CBC commentators that the Canadians merited only the French PM Edoard Phillippe and (Gasp!! Horror!!) no members of the Royal Family were in attendance. (The French president was with President Trump at Omaha Beach and Prince Charles was at Bayeaux.) Chippy little bar-stewards I must say. :?


View attachment 397765
There are plenty of Royals about so the Canucks maybe have a point. Having said that, the Royals usually wait to be invited so I wonder if the Canadian Government actually asked for a Royal.
 
Sounds like one of the Quakers in their Friends Relief Service.
Fair dos to them, they are true pacifists but did what they could within the remit of their religious beliefs.
FWIW, if he was in the FRS, there’s a good chance he was involved in the relief mission to Bergen Belsen.

Friends Relief Service
Although mi dad didn't frequently comment on the war he did say that some of the folk he considered brave were the Quaker (Canadians iirc) who drove ambulances alongside his tank whilst under fire.*
He said they were nicknamed 'Quack quacks' and had a Donald Duck motif on their vehicles - never heard other reference to them though.
Then again, I think there was a reference to the two nameless crew of the Salvation Army tea wagon that accompanied his unit too.
* I think Quakers are generally OK although I recently had an issue with some right BS from them promoting their film 'Warchild' suggesting Britain enables child soldiering in HMAF.
 
Although mi dad didn't frequently comment on the war he did say that some of the folk he considered brave were the Quaker (Canadians iirc) who drove ambulances alongside his tank whilst under fire.*
He said they were nicknamed 'Quack quacks' and had a Donald Duck motif on their vehicles - never heard other reference to them though.
Then again, I think there was a reference to the two nameless crew of the Salvation Army tea wagon that accompanied his unit too.
* I think Quakers are generally OK although I recently had an issue with some right BS from them promoting their film 'Warchild' suggesting Britain enables child soldiering in HMAF.
Interesting, we know that Disney spread propaganda and morale during the war, and that Disney artists designed pictures for vehicles, aircraft, subs, and kit; Disney signs, nose art and emblems.

The Disney brand was donated to the war effort free of charge, and Walt himself served in World War I, as a Red Cross ambulance driver at the age of 16. Maybe there's a connection with your Quaker ambulances. In WW2, Donald Duck was almost the face of the Allies.

Quakers; conscientious objectors, were aka the Friends Relief Service or the Canadian Friends, driving FAU ambulances and transports also with 21st Army group in WWII, like they'd done in WWI. They're not shy about publicity or their history and they got the Nobel Peace Prize in 1947. I only know all this because I just spent ten minutes looking it up ;)

Friends Ambulance Unit (FAU) in WWII: Civilian Relief Work in Mainland Europe
 
Excellent memorial service at what remains of RAF Ramsbury yesterday. Many, many people attended with an RAF guard of honour, USAF and USN reps Plus cadets etc. Even a C17 flypast.

Band of Brothers country!

Friends of the WW2 437th Troop Carrier Group
 
I am reminded of the elderly Head of Physics at my school in the late 70s, early 80s. Had been a conscientious objector during WW2, but agreed to serve in the RAMC. It always amused me that his moral high ground a) did not prevent him being the last remaining master at the school who used the cane; and b) alter the fact that the school had a large number of excellent pre-war German microscopes that he had carefully looted for the science department from an Italian teaching hospital...
 
I am reminded of the elderly Head of Physics at my school in the late 70s, early 80s. Had been a conscientious objector during WW2, but agreed to serve in the RAMC. It always amused me that his moral high ground a) did not prevent him being the last remaining master at the school who used the cane; and b) alter the fact that the school had a large number of excellent pre-war German microscopes that he had carefully looted for the science department from an Italian teaching hospital...
Wasn't called Quilley, by any chance?
 

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Just to remind everyone that decent people do exist....

RNAS Yeovilton Base Warrant Officer returns to Normandy | Royal Navy

Leading the Standard Bearers to the memorial statue. The Standard that he proudly carried was the original White Ensign that was landed by the Beachmaster on Sword Beach at 0800 on June 6, 1944.

The ceremony was attended by the Mayor, General the Lord Dannatt, the SONT’s Patron and Field Marshall Montgomery's Grandson. The flypast was precisely timed with the Last Post.

WO1 Firth said; “This is the greatest honour I have had had across 29 years of service. It was honestly so humbling to be amongst so many Veterans that were on Sword Beach 75 years ago, a huge honour to be involved.

“I am proud to say that the tears flowed as the piper played and again as Normandy Veteran Len Hobbs (95) read aloud the exaltation.”
 

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