Saw this on the BBC...Jack Lyon, the last veteran of World War II's Great Escape has died at the age of 101. (He was a look-out and when he heard a gunshot, knew that he could not enter the tunnel...this most likely saved his life. 76 men escaped but 73 were recaptured and of those, 50 were executed.) You must know the story of the Great Escape, if not you can read about it here. It is an extraordinary story...600 men working at night for a year to dig tunnels at a prisoner of war camp, right under the noses of the guards. "The Great Escape" is a book written by Paul Bricknell, an Australian who was also an inmate there. Although he wrote this as a novel, the basic story is true. If you only know the film "The Great Escape " with Steve McQueen... Well, let me just tell you what Jack Lyon had to say about it! He called it, "absolute rubbish" and "not one American took part in it and as for the motorbike, it never existed."!
Of course, we all know how Hollywood likes to change things, so I always say, try to read as much as you can about something to get to the truth of it.
Jack Lyon died at his home in Bexhill-on-Sea in East Sussex this past Friday. Glad to know that he liked to spend time at the RAF branch in Bexhill and that he was given much honor and respect. They had a 100th birthday party for him in 2017. You may read about it just here! The photo of the sunset is from 2015 when we visited Bexhill and I do believe that the RAF branch that I am telling you about is just behind that white building! The Albatross Club, I think it is called. (I am so thrilled when I read about something and it is somewhere that I visited in England!) Richard and I have some very dear friends who live very close to Bexhill...Henry and Joy! (Here I am posing with them, in my best Darth Vader haircut.)
If you were able to go to that link that I gave you...I was also very pleased to learn that Jack Lyon was friends with Doug Bader!
"Reach For The Sky" is another book that you must know.
If not, then please look it up! (Another film was made from that book too!)
I found a clip from YouTube of Jack Lyon reading the emotional letter that he sent home when he knew the war was finally over.
All respect and honor to you, sir. Thank you for your service.