Hi from Cape Town!

Tells us all about yourself and your connection to 102 Squadron

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Hi from Cape Town!

Postby melaniejane » Thu May 03, 2012 10:27 am

Hi all! Pleased to meet you! I am Melanie Herman from Bulawayo, Rhodesia (Zimbabwe), late of Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape and now living in beautiful Cape Town. I grew up hearing about the uncle I would never know who died 9 years and 11 months before I was born, my Mom's eldest brother Derrick Sykes, . . . . . .and getting regular updates on Derrick from my Gran through her spritualist medium!!!! It never seemed at all odd somehow!! Derrick was always as real as the other aunts and uncles who inhabited my childhood. It was only when I married and my husband turned out also to have had a maternal uncle, who also flew on heavy bombers (Liberators with the South African Air Force in Italy) and who also met an unusual (and in his case mysterious) end, that I promised myself one day to look into both their lives. What is it they say: life is what happens while you're making other plans??? Well it was to be 20-something years before I finally got down to business but have now been busy with my two parallel research threads for more than 8 years! It has been an absorbing odyssey, frustrating at times, thrilling at others, but unbelievably rewarding. I still haven't found the SAAF Liberator (it disappeared without a trace on 2/3 March 1945 on a mission to bomb Verona), but I have tracked the lives, air force careers and deaths of both uncles, traced their crew families, their friends and girlfriend/fiancee, and met some AMAZING people along the way, not least Tom Wingham and the other 102 Sqn veterans I met at the 2007 Reunion in Pocklington. This site is EXACTLY what has long been needed to ensure that all the brave "boys" of 102 Sqn are not forgotten with the passing of the years; a HUGE bouquet for Chris and the team who embarked on this journey. I will be only too pleased to be able to contribute what I have learned and in this way, at last, to give something back to the memory of the Squadron and to others who are seeking information. Seeya online! best regards, Mel
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Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:51 am

Re: Hi from Cape Town!

Postby ChrisInBlackpool » Thu May 03, 2012 8:44 pm

Hi Mel,

What a wonderful introduction... 2007... you might have met some of the guys on here.. Simon and his lovely wife Elaine Kuleratne ... Bill Leyland??

Have to say I am SOOOOOO looking forward to seeing what you have managed to put together on your uncle and his crew... no rush.. I have plenty to be getting on with :)

All the best for now

For the memory of everyone who served with 102 Ceylon Squadron,
but mostly for the 1,027 in two World Wars who never came home.
Lest we never forget. http://www.102ceylonsquadron.co.uk
Site Admin
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Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 2:59 pm
Location: Blackpool, Lancashire

Re: Hi from Cape Town!

Postby Bill Leyland » Sat May 05, 2012 9:32 am

Hello again Mel. Welcome :D
Bill Leyland
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2011 5:56 pm

Re: Hi from Cape Town!

Postby melaniejane » Sat May 12, 2012 7:49 am

Thanks for the welcome, guys!! It's nice to be back!!
M x
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:51 am

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