One of the last surviving Second World War Lancaster bomber air crew, Ronald Clarke, recently enjoyed a day at the British military headquarters at Northwood as a special VIP guest.
Ronald, who is 94 and lives at the Richmond Northampton retirement village – part of Bupa, was invited to the Northwood headquarters to open the annual events and family’s day, where he was met by two Air Vice Marshalls, the Commanding Officer, the Second in Command, Station Warrant Officer and many other service personnel who were keen to meet him.
Ronald was a Warrant Officer with 15 Squadron, Group 3 Bomber Command during the war, and a radio operator onboard Lancasters. Born in Harrow, London, he was posted to RAF Mildenhall for the last year of the war from where he flew on eight operations and still has his original log book.
Sharon Carlisle, Care Manager at Richmond Northampton, said: “It’s so important that we help residents celebrate their achievements and interests, and this was a great opportunity for Ronald. He had a wonderful day and was so grateful, especially to his domiciliary carer, Lorraine Adams who volunteered to drive and stay with him for the day.
“We were delighted we could make it possible for him - just seeing the smile on his face made it worth it. He’s since been invited to two further events which he is keen to attend, so here’s hoping there are more to come!”
Ronald moved to the Richmond village with his wife Jean in 2014, but she sadly passed away earlier this year. He is very close to his son and two daughters, who regularly visit him.