What a shame! Stanley Ballard can’t come…

I had a phone call yesterday from one of the veterans who was meant to be coming to Holland, Stanley Ballard, aged 88. Sadly he can no longer come on the trip owing to a sudden illness. He’s devastated he can’t make it. Stan was in the Merchant Navy and is very proud of his white beret, only worn by those who fought in the Arctic. It has a black band to represent the shipmates lost up there.  I met him a few months ago at a lunch given for veterans at North Cheam Sport and Leisure Club. What a character! He likes singing ‘The Way We Were’. He’s got a great voice. I was looking forward to spending more time with Stan. He’ll be sadly missed by all the other veterans. His shipmate, Ernie Davies, who he’s known since he was 17, is coming on the trip and bringing photographs him and Stan together during the war. Get well soon…

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