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Hi from Bill

PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2011 6:41 pm
by Bill Leyland
Testing ...testing ... one,two,three .... can you hear me mother?? If I hold the coat hanger this way ... is that better? I'm getting something ... Crikey look at that! All those folk out there looking in ... all down to a little chap from Blackpool. :D Astounding job Chris. Well done pal.
My link with the squadron is through my late uncle - a guy I never knew. Robert Leyland was two months short of his 21st when he was killed with 5 other members of his crew on 25/7/1944 returning from a mission to Stuttgart. Sgt Bob Leyland was the Wireless Operator/AG. Very little was known about his RAF life (and death) so I was compelled to research every aspect and record it, so he would not be forgotten - and he very nearly was.
The inspirational Tom Wingham was my main source of information concerning squadron life, and he also put me in touch with some amazing ex 102 crewmen. My respect for these chaps has not waned in the 13 years since I first started my research - it has grown. Their numbers are shrinking and it is even more important now that their stories are recorded - from the men on the ground, to the top pilots.
Chris has got the verve (and nerve) to contact these 102 crewmen and their wives, and is being allowed to open these story books for the benefit of us all, and I cannot thank him enough for coming along at the right time with these computer skills and enthusiasm.
Much good will come from this, and I'm honoured to be involved.
Pleased to meet you all.