In the diary he describes flying in his C for Charlie Avro Lancaster bomber as navigator at the end of the second world war and it also includes a penned self portrait smoking a pipe.
Then completely out of the blue on the 11/11/17 (rather fittingly Remembrance day) the daughter of his skipper one F/Lt Jack Goodrum made contact via a comment on Dennis’ 1944 diary post, explaining who she was and that Dennis and Jack had remained in contact after the war.
Amanda mentioned that she’d loved reading the diaries and that via the 149 Squadron Facebook page she’d also made contact with the granddaughter Sarah of the wireless operator F/Sgt Allan Jones living in New Zealand who amazingly had two photos of huge interest to share of the time.
The first was of the aircrew together posed with their ground staff, the second probably taken from his Lancaster of another in close formation flying over France. Amanda also had her father’s log book image that detailed the crews ranks and roles and matches the group photograph.
Dennis or “Denny” as he was known is standing second from left in the above photo, the first time I had ever seen him beyond the self portrait he penned in the same year.
‘Sandy’ in the image third from left standing is actually mid upper gunner F/O George Powell and became a life long friend of skipper (& pilot) F/Lt Jack Goodrum and his family, who stands in the middle of the group photo.
“Al” (full name Allan Lloyd Jones) F/Sgt wireless operator is standing second from right.
Two more photos come from Amanda’s father’s collection, although I’m not sure that Dennis is in these, but I imagine they are contemporary.
An amazing outcome of sharing their stories on the internet and the families of all must be very proud. I think what always amazes me is that Dennis was only 21 years old when he was photographed and indeed drew his own likeness.
It makes me feel very humble…