PHILL BARRATT PHOTO GALLERYAlthough Phill and I both attended the memorial, we have never met and we live thousands of miles apart. But, thanks to Phill, Sue-On and the kids back home were able to see photos of the Memorial Ceremony and Fly-Past before my mother and I had even left the memorial site. Phill, wife Storm, and sons Rory and Elliot, live a few miles farther down the Trent Valley from Sandon. While taking digital photos at the ceremony, Phill overheard someone say that there was a Tribute Website associated with the event. After taking photos of the fly-past, Phill returned home to his computer and entered "Sandon" and "RAF" into the AltaVista search engine. Our site came up and within minutes the folks back in Canada were viewing the photos which Phill had e-mailed to them. Because of Bank Holiday closings at the Stone Library, my usual e-mail link with Sue-On was unavailable until I could get to Don Mitchell's system just before our departure. It was only then that Sue-On relayed the amazing story of Phill's thoughtful resourcefulness.
May we soon meet in person, Phill. Meanwhile, here is Phill's description of the ceremony -- followed by some of the photos he sent to Canada. The original photos sent by Phill were large, high resolution beauts which I've had to shrink considerably to expedite site loading -- sorry 'bout that.
The memorial is very close to the actual crash site (10-20 yards away) on a small road (the A51) between Sandon and
Burston in beautiful countryside. The two aircraft followed the original path and flew straight over the flags (as in the photos) positioned in the field at the site of the crash. They came in very slowly, elegantly and respectfully but as they got closer, the
size and the sound were a little too much for some of the veterans - and why not! They flew over the site 3 times and then went off to their next rendezvous in Wales I think.
After they left the area the Last Post was played by a local horn player and a prayer was said. Not a dry eye in the house.
Many local dignitaries were there including the Mayor of Stafford and other members of the British Legion. Many of those present proudly displayed the medals they had been given in/after the war. The BBC was also there recording and apparently there will be coverage on local TV - I'll try to record it and get it on to the web...
Photos by Phill Barratt
TAKE ME TO THE BCATP MUSEUM
William G. Hillman
BILL and SUE-ON HILLMAN ECLECTIC STUDIO
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