Another wonderful connection – Len Gillies, Air Bomber 218 Squadron

218 Sqdn 1945 Crew Q-Queenie_Edith

The Guinane crew, 218 (Gold Coast) Squadron, Chedborough, 1945
Back Row L-R: Geoff Ginn (Rear Gunner), “Guy” Guinane (Pilot), Jack Jarmy (Navigator), Jock Lees (Mid-Upper Gunner)
Front Row L-R: Len Gillies (Bomb Aimer), Clarrie Ormisher (Engineer), Kevin Roberts (Wireless Op.)
© Doug Gillies

Perhaps not an obvious connection, based on the title of this post, however there is a strong one. After I had visited Jack Jarmy last summer, I came across a website for 218 Squadron. Within it, there was a visitors book, so I registered and left a message just letting everybody know that Jack, who completed his second tour with the Squadron, was still alive and well.

To be honest, I had completely forgotten that I had even left the message. That is, until today when Doug contacted me from Australia to say that his father, Len Gillies, Jack’s Air Bomber is also still alive and well. Doug was blown away by first finding my message and then finding Jack’s information on the blog. Hopefully Jack and Len might get together after all these years again.

As well as the wonderful crew picture above, Doug also has passed on the image below showing the crew, once again in front of ‘Edith’, but this time also including the ground crew.

218 SQDN Air Crew and Engineers Chedburgh 1945

HA-Q ‘Edith’.
From left to right: Geoff Ginn, Jock Lees, Clarence Ormisher, Maurice Guinane, Jack Jarmy, Leonard Gillies and Kevin Roberts.
© Doug Gillies

And finally another picture of ‘Edith’, being worked on by Ground crew, form the Imperial War Museum.

large

Mechanics at work on an engine of Avro Lancaster B Mark III, LM577 ‘HA-Q’ “Edith”, of No. 218 Squadron RAF on a pan hardstanding at Chedburgh, Suffolk. “Edith’s” sortie tally shows a total of 84 bombing operations achieved with Nos. 622 and 218 Squadrons, in addition to which the aircraft also flew 14 food-dropping and prisoner-of-war repatriation sorties to and from Holland in May 1945. By this time relegated to a training role, LM577 completed more flying hours than any other Lancaster on the station.
© IWM

4 thoughts on “Another wonderful connection – Len Gillies, Air Bomber 218 Squadron

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