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  1. #1
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    Default Black History month starter

    Hello,
    It is Black History month ,October 2020.
    So to start it off on this RAF Forum let us remember them.
    First and probably the one that stands out for me is P/O Michael A. GUILFOYLE.

    LANCASTER III - ND424 "PH-C" Lost on 26/27 June 1944.
    Crew were -
    P/O. M.A.Guilfoyle -pow
    Sgt. H.D.Davies - evaded.
    WO2. J. Sunshine RCAF - pow.
    F/Sgt. J.S.J. Stephen - evaded.
    W/O. R.E.Yates RAAF - evaded.
    Sgt. L. J. Faircloth - evaded.
    Sgt. D. F. Jordon - pow.

    P/O. Guilfoyle was Jamaican. He was one of a very special few RAF airmen of WW2.
    As a POW he was to be one of the 168 allied airmen who were imprisoned in Buchenwald Concentration Camp.

    https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon....L._SL1000_.jpg

    Thanks to people such as him we would not have the freedoms that we hold so dear today.

    http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/2...ead/lead1.html

    Are there others that members would wish to mention , if so then feel free to add to this thread.
    Thank you
    Alex
    Last edited by Alex Smart; 1st October 2020 at 17:56.

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Hi Alex

    Please forgive my ignorance but I do not understand what black history month is. Is it June 1944 as you infer? Surely in that month airmen of dozens of nationalities lost there lives so that we have the freedoms we hold so dear today? Surely each of those nationalities was of equal value?

    Cheers

    Mike

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Just October, any year, British and Commonwealth as far as I know.

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Hi Alex,

    172124 P/O Michael Alexander Guilfoyle was indeed born in Jamaica.

    You'll find his photo here

    He and his family migrated to Australia in the 60s following his time as a pilot for BWIA and Air Jamaica, settling first in Sydney where he bought a news agency then moving up to Cairns, QLD where he was an estate agent.

    Retired to the Atherton Tableland, QLD in 1981. Passed away May 2009.

    Regards,

    Dave

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to alieneyes For This Useful Post:

    Alex Smart (1st October 2020)

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Many thanks to you both for your input.
    looks like I got it wrong.
    I though now it seems wrongly that he was the airman of colour that can be seen in the link that I gave in my first post https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon....L._SL1000_.jpg of the book's front cover.
    Just goes to show that assuming is not always the correct answer.

    Alex

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Well put, Alex.

    For future reference on Black History Month (Feb in North America, Oct in UK) in the UK:
    https://www.blackhistorymonth.org.uk/
    Toujours propos

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Miles Tripp in The Eighth Passenger, bomb-aimer on Lancaster ops, 218 Squadron RAF, recounts his experience of a 40 ops late-war tour over Europe, incl Dresden.
    The Eighth Passenger is a metaphor for such service which I think needs no explanation.

    The crew was a mixed bunch. The pilot was Australian F/Lt George F Klenner DFC 429813 RAAF, while one of the Air Gunners (rear turrret) was Harry McF McCalla 605574, a Jamaican of colour who remained in the UK post-war.

    GF "Dig" Klenner DFC pilot
    George Bell DFM W/Op
    H "Harry" McF McCalla A/G
    Ray Parke F/E
    Paul Songest A/G
    L "Les" Walker DFM (Nav)
    MB "Mike" Tripp (Bomb-aimer)

    Tripp, an experienced author, was able to contact all his crew in the 1960s and his book is the result.
    [Second] Third 1993 Edition recommended for its extended commentary on Bomber Command late war ops, esp Dresden, and the war-time and post-war effects on the men.

    See also: Crewing up (Six OTU, + FE, HCU)
    Last edited by Don Clark; 2nd October 2020 at 20:42. Reason: sp edn amend
    Toujours propos

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    Alex Smart (1st October 2020)

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Found this archive link -
    West Indian Aircrew WW2
    http://www.rafcommands.com/archive/09627.php

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    Perhaps I mistake the use of, or possible reluctance to follow, links in posts.
    I could have expanded further on my Harry McCalla link or perhaps made it plainer.

    For completeness, then

    Caribbean aircrew in the RAF during WW2
    Website: https://www.caribbeanaircrew-ww2.com/
    Rolls: https://www.caribbeanaircrew-ww2.com/?page_id=949
    and so on.

    In addition, I see here a

    Last edited by Don Clark; 2nd October 2020 at 03:45.
    Toujours propos

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    Alex Smart (2nd October 2020)

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    Default Re: Black History month starter

    As October draws towards it's close (and with it Black History Month in the UK), thought it might be of interest to mention a 1985 piece from German TV Channel SWR.

    It's about the RAF bombing of Dresden 13/14 February 1945.
    My excuse is that it relates to Harry McCalla, the Jamaican.

    Having survived a completed late-war tour over Germany, forty years later rear gunner Harry and his then surviving crewmates came together once more, to take a significant part in this poignant reflection on the destruction of the city:
    Krieg der Bomber, Teil 5: Dresden - Apokalypse am Aschermittwoch
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8uwbM3yWuXs

    The subtitle, Apocalypse on Ash Wednesday, is particularly poignant, given the date of the attack and the destruction wrought.

    In late 2020, I expect they all rest in peace at last.
    Last edited by Don Clark; 27th October 2020 at 02:33.
    Toujours propos

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    Alex Smart (26th October 2020)

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