With the week now past, I can report that collective efforts to help preserve the memory of F/Sgt William Hurrell (RAF 175 Sqn) were well received by his surviving family who had flown to Holland from Australia.
At only 21 years old, William was flying one of the most advanced, powerful fighters yet built, in some of the most dangerous missions of the war. He did this for a future that he would never have the chance to see.
We will never be able to thank William for his sacrifice; but we can honour him as we have this past week, and we can honour him by ensuring that future generations never forget his name, and never forget what it was that he fought for.
I would personally like to thank all who made it possible for me to take part in this wonderful act of remembrance. I have been so very impressed to see the efforts of the Dutch Air force, and all levels of government working together to recover the remains of this young man.
This is one of many recoveries of missing airmen expected in the coming years; a project started by the Dutch government to pay tribute to those who lost their lives fighting for our freedoms, yet have no known graves. This is an effort worthy of emulation, and one that must be highly respected.
The recovery work on this project has also sparked a new initiative to remember those who never came home. “Blue Skies”, an effort that can be attributed to Leemans Speciaalwerken, an initiative that we are honoured to take part in.
Blue Skies aims to ensure that these lost airmen can get their wings back. Typhoon Legacy Co. Ltd. will support this by carrying the name of each lost pilot on JP843 for a minimum of one year, upon retirement from active display on the aircraft, a panel will be hung for display to ensure the memory is not forgotten.