Roy Stewart Wilson, service number 64904, was a pilot in the Royal Air Force and he died on 14 July 1941. He was just nineteen years old and the son of James and Eileen Wilson. I have no connection to him whatsoever. Yet on Sunday morning, I placed a cross at our local War Memorial in his honour (and subsequently discovered I’d afforded him the incorrect rank).Here’s why: the priest-in-charge of our local Parish Church, Father Andrew, mentioned Pilot Officer Wilson every chance he got in the run up to Remembrance Day. When Father Andrew had first arrived in the parish some thirty or more years ago, one of his parishioners was Pilot Officer Wilson’s widowed mother. He had been her only child. One day, as Remembrance Day approached, she said to Father Andrew, “Who will remember my boy when I am gone?” He gave her his word that he would and faithfully kept that promise. Father Andrew retired last year and, as is usual, left our parish. I am certain that in his new home, he will still be talking about Pilot Officer Wilson. But as Pilot Officer Wilson is recorded on our local War Memorial, we’ve decided to carry on that tradition of remembrance.
Why not look on your town’s War Memorial and pick out a name to remember specifically every year. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission can help you find out a little more about the name you’ve selected. The Royal British Legion is also running a campaign called Every Man Remembered, the aim of which is “by the end of the Centenary in 2018, our objective is to ensure every fallen hero from across the Commonwealth is remembered individually by those living today.”
Long time readers may well remember this post.