Thursday, 26 June 2014

The Curtain is Down!

Part obscured by long grass, this headstone commemorates Sgt Air Gunner Dennis Denville RAFVR who died on 09 September 1942. The stone records that he 'lost his life whilst flying for his country.' His father was a theatre producer at the Grand Theatre in Halifax, hence the additional words "You have played your part. The curtain is down." Sgt Denville was interred in Stoney Royd cemetery in Halifax, Yorkshire

The excellent Yorkshire Aircraft website provides some background to his death. A Wellington bomber DV433 was undertaking a basic night training circuit flying exercise and left Finningley airfield at 2325. Five minutes later, they made a slightly heavy landing and the pilot applied power and intended to continue with the exercise, attempting to climb away. The aircraft failed to gain height and flew into trees and crashed with the loss of the crew of four. A resulting Court of Enquiry cleared the pilot of blame.




2 comments:

Bill Nicholls said...

I've come across many storys like that. Strangeest was a gunner who was killed when the aicraft crashed in the village came from. He is buried in the churchyard

Laurie said...

Goodness me, Bill. That is very sad. I suppose the villagers witnessed it?

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