Find Terry Murphy...... who was on VC10s
Sadly we learn that Terry Murphy finally passed away on 21 December 2018 after his long illness. Our deepest sympathies go to his wife Betty and the family.
At kleast we just managed to re-unite him with some of his oldest friends shortly before he died. An Obituary will folllow soon when details of his funeral are known.
An enquiry was made to the Association website some three or four years ago but our research posting on the website brought no joy to the enquirer who was keen to trace a former 10 Sqn early 1970s VC10 pilot. The task was re-started recently and we are pleased to now report great success.
The parents of Richard Gilham celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary in 2015 and were keen to trace their Best Man with whom contact had been lost over the years. As a result of this more recent research, which even involved our Chairman Mike Westwood knocking on doors in the village of Carterton, adjacent to RAF Brize Norton, we were eventually delighted to finally track our man (and his wife Betty) down.
Terry G. Murphy was born in 1932 and lived in Bexleyheath, Kent, next door to the father of our enquirer Richard Gilham. Terry joined the RAF as a National Service pilot in 1951 and flew Canberras and Vulcans before his last tour on VC10s as a copilot, leaving the RAF in October 1976. He now lives in Cleethorpes, N. Lincs. but sadly is not too well at the moment.
However, contact has been regained between the couples and, as a kind gesture, Richard Gilham has made a donation on his parents behalf, to the RAF Benevolent Fund in gratitude to the efforts made by the Association in tracing his parents' friends.
We wish Terry Murphy 'All The Best'
and out thoughts are with him, his wife Betty and their family, not only in this festive period, but for the future New Year also.
Get well Terry.
Association Member Aly Etherington is keen to trace relatives of a crew, who were all killed on 19 November 1943, when a 10 Sqn Halifax crashed into a hangar at RAF Tangmere on the south coast. HX181 (ZA-K) was returning to the UK and diverted to Tangmere after a raid on the IG Farben chemical works at Leverkusen, south of Cologne.
Sgt A.J. Oudinot, Aly’s great-uncle, was the crew’s Air Bomber and it is her proposed intention to have a memorial erected near to the Tangmere crash site which forms part of a recently built housing area constructed by Miller Homes.
In the week following Remembrance Sunday, Aly laid wreaths for the crew of HX181 near to the crash site on the edge of the former Tangmere airfield. She was accompanied by Rev Trevor Marshall, vicar of St Andrews Church, Tangmere. Sadly, the very next day, she received an email from Dudley Hooley, Director of Tangmere Museum, saying that Miller Homes had removed the wreath, despite it not being on their housing estate, and they had handed it in to the Museum.
Aly was quite naturally somewhat upset but Mr. Hooley then suggested that the wreath be laid in the Garden of Remembrance at the Museum alongside one already laid there. This was done on Saturday 24 November by Aly and Dudley and the Rev Marshall who said a prayer, and a poem found on our website about Melbourne Airfield, was recited. Their small party was also joined by two Museum staff.
During a silent moment of reflection, a robin flew over and rested on the Museum Garden monument. It stayed for some time. All present were quite moved by this little gesture from Mother Nature.
Note: It is interesting to learn that Dudley Hooley's father was also with 10 Squadron during the war: Sgt. Robert Hooley. It is thought that he was a Whitley observer (later called navigators) circa 1941.
Alex Bellisario, the partner of our membership Coordinator Phil Marter, gave birth to a baby boy on 10 January 2019. We wish her and father Phil well and send our heartiest best wishes.
Raife Marter-Bellisario checked in for his World journey with a Baggage Weight of 8lbs 10 ozs on arrival in Winchester.
Congratulations to all his crew.
Click on the links below to read a short report on the events at Melbourne on 11 November 2018 and to see photos.