Geoff Wellum Remembered.
Wed Jul 25, 2018 11:21

I was on holiday and was saddened to return and learn of his passing. He was truly a great man and my condolences go out to his family and friends. I had the honor to spend time with this hero over many years. He was one of the Battle of Britain fighter pilots we know as The Few, a Supermarine Spitfire pilot with 92 Squadron and later he defended Malta also in 1942. He was one of those who faced up to a huge burden of protecting the people of Britain in 1940 and Malta in 1942 from invasion . He wrote a best selling book that became a film of the same name:First Light. Geoff spoke to me quite candidly and openly about the terrible things he saw and had also heard over his radio as well as of his own breakdown after these experiences- added to those he suffered in Malta. He wrote the book, he said as a kind of therapy. He also wanted to immortalize the fallen and those like Brian Kingcombe who deserved recognition, which carries through his book and in the film of the same name.He preferred to call others "Heroes, not himself. He shot down around 5 enemy aircraft and helped save Britain and Malta. His deeds in wartime match up to the dictionary definition of a hero-and that is how I will always remember him. He told me that he still had nightmares most nights and that he wanted to also purge those memories before he forgot the men he wanted to remember. He suffered for many years post war and it broke up his marriage and caused him all sorts of trouble. It was good to see him get some recognition and to come out of all of this darkness, through into the light. He is now immortal, in our memories as well as in many books, a film, documentaries, models, prints, die cast and plastic kits and has had gate guardians and replicas as well as flying Battle of Britain Memorial Spitfires painted as his. God bless him and he is now at peace. I wrote a couple of poems after meeting him and Tom Neil, who also passed whilst I was away on holiday.Their words inspired me. One was published and went into Scramble-the newsletter magazine sent to The Few and members of the Battle of Britain Historical Society that I was a member of . I will treasure my time spent with him and the many meetings and conversations we had. May we always remember such men. I am seeing him flying in his Spitfire, through dark clouds, emerging into that most brilliant of lights God bless you Geoff, Rest in peace. Paul Davies

  • Geoff Wellum RIPG Wellum, Fri Jul 20 07:10
    • Geoff Wellum Remembered. — Paul Davies, Wed Jul 25 11:21
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