History

Hundreds mourn forgotten Dambusters veteran

Hundreds of mourners attended the funeral of a Bomber Command veteran they had never met, following a newspaper and internet appeal to honour him.

Harold Jellicoe Percival died aged 99 at a nursing home on the Lancashire coast with few friends and little family, and staff feared no-one would be there to pay their respects.

He was part of the ground team which supported the legendary Dambusters squadron, whose daring raids in May 1943 smashed three dams serving the industrial heartland of the Ruhr valley.

But after a public appeal for the Second World War veteran, an estimated 300 people attended the service at Lytham St Annes, with traffic blocking roads in the area and space running out in the crematorium. He was laid to rest yesterday at 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month — via redwolf.newsvine.com

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