R.I.P Robert (Percy) Whammond - Old gunner dies at 100

Discussion in 'Gunners' started by Kelpie, Sep 28, 2008.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Hello everyone.

    I just wanted to come on and ask if anyone would like to take a moment to pay their respects to my grandfather Robert (Percy) Whammond, an old gunner who served with the Royal Horse Artillery. He died in the early morning on 24th September just 23 days after his 100th birthday. I'm afraid I don't have much specific information about his time in the regiment except that I know he was serving as early as 1931 and that he fought in North Africa and Italy during World War Two.
    He was a very quiet and personal man who loved his family first and foremost. I've never known a more decent person and it was such a privilidge to be his grandson. He had strong moral values, was extremely hard working and ethical. I am told that in later years whilst working for Timex watchmakers he would always be at his station precisely 5 minutes before his shift each day and would remain there working until precisely 5 o'clock which was when his shift ended. Everyone else would be getting washed up and ready to bolt out the door by this time and my mother who also worked at the factory would have to wait much to her annoyance for him to give her a lift. When she complained to him he would simply tell her "A hard days work for a hard days pay". He simply would not take anything for nothing.
    Right up until the end he was a very independent and proud man who never asked for help of any sort. He wouldn't even accept many of the the entitlements that as a pensioner could have made his life easier. That was just his way and being so stubborn and so proud no one could change his mind. He used to love walking in the countryside and would go for regular walks well into his eighties. Even in his mid nineties he would try despite his extremely fragile condition. It wasn't unusual for neighbors or friends to knock the door and warn us that he'd wandered too far from home and appeared to be struggling. To many this will sound like the actions of a confused sufferer of dementia but this was far from the case. His mind was sharp right up until the day he died, which made his decline all the more unbearable. He simply refused to be beaten by old age. Of course when we went to offer assistance he would pretend he was OK and carry on his way home. All we could do is walk with him and pretend to be going that way anyway in order not to offend. He battled ill health for a long time but somehow he would always survive. He had pneumonia on at least three occasions in recent years that I can think of and came very close to death. A few years back he had a fall and broke his neck. Even that didn't finish him off. Then they had to remove his ear due to a cancerous growth. His will to constantly fight and struggle against the odds was awe inspiring. Indeed I held the man in awe from the time when I was a child up until the day he departed. I went to see him in his home a few days before his death and he was in very bad shape suffering from a combination of extreme old age and pneumonia once again. He looked as though he could die at any moment. In obvious pain from numerous ailments and struggling to breathe he still managed to tell me "go mak yerself a cup o'tea". Here was the man lying at deaths door and all he could think about was showing hospitality to his family. I sensed that he felt ashamed and embarrassed that he couldn't get up and make me a cup of tea himself. There's no way to express how highly I regarded him as words don't do him justice.
    He would hate me to make a fuss as he never was one to make a big deal about anything but please give him a thought as he deserved so much more from life than what he recieved.

    Many thanks.
  2. RIP to an amazing sounding man. You should be very proud.
  3. RIP Robert (Percy) Whammond - a man with high values and an amazing sense of pride. You have every right to feel proud. The Royal Regiment shares your loss - My best wishes to to you and your family.
  4. Ditto
  5. RIP Robert (Percy) Whammond

    All respect to him and condolences to you and your family.