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Published on : Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Members of the 609 (West Riding) Squadron and their families today (Wednesday 6th November, 2013) laid wreaths to mark Remembrance Day at the Squadron’s two memorial sites in the terminal at Leeds Bradford Airport.Airport Chaplain, Rev’d Richard Dimmery, led the service at the Squadron’s recently restored memorial, located within the departure lounge prior to the wreaths being laid by eighty three year old John Matley from Morley, Leeds who served in the squadron from 1951-53.
The Royal Auxiliary Air Force Squadron was formed over 80 years ago and commenced its flying history at the old the RAF station of Yeadon. Initially the Squadron recruits came from the immediate area around Yeadon and Leeds. But, during 1940- 41, and as the war took its toll, the Squadron Operations Record Book reflects the increased numbers of personnel from New Zealand, Australia, Canada, Belgium and France. Whilst 609 is no longer a flying Squadron and is no longer based in the West Riding, it is still proud, however, to serve under the White Rose.
John Mately said; ”It is very important to remember people who have died serving their country and I feel honoured to be able to lay this wreath at this very special ceremony today and mark my respects at the plaque sites.” The Rev’d Richard Dimmery added: “I feel privileged to share this special commemoration with members of the 609 squadron and their families. It was both a poignant and reflective occasion.”