On Saturday, 9th November, a group of a dozen of us made our way from the Welsh village of Trefil to a mountain-top in the Brecon Beacons. We went to hold a Remembrance Service at the site of an RAF bomber that crashed in 1940. Six of the aircrew died in the crash – on their way back from a successful air-raid on the Nazi submarine bases in France.
Rain and sleet were in our faces and frost under foot. The youngest child with us burst into tears – it was freezing cold.
At the site we held a simple memorial service, laid a wreath and had a moment’s silence. To remember those who died for our freedoms.
Those who lost their lives in that fateful crash were:
- Pilot Officer Albert Tindall (21 years)
- Sergeant David Mills: Pilot (21 years)
- Sergeant Hylton Daniel Ellis: Observer/Nose Gunner (26 years)
- Sergeant Stanley Gordon Howard: Air Gunner
- Sergeant Reginald Brown: Air Gunner (22 years)
- Sergeant David Ernest Wallace: Air Gunner
Reginald Brown was from New Zealand; Albert Tindall from Sydney, Australia.
I sent the photographs to the Royal New Zealand Airforce, who replied, thanking us for what we had done (see below). “We are very thankful that you have acknowledged their sacrifice and thankful also that people like you do so.”
It was a lovely email and a reminder of the links that bind Britain and the Commonwealth – in good times and bad.
David Wyles-Jones BSc., BA, PGDipBusAdmin (HR), PGDipGEnv., PGCertBus. CMHRINZ, FCIS
Assistant Director Corporate Support (Ceremonial and Protocol) (Training & Support), Air Staff
Royal New Zealand Air Force