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Granite memorial airlifted to mountainside grave
A CHINOOK from RAF Odiham airlifted a granite memorial to a remote mountainside grave in Scotland.
Pilot Officer William Drew, Sergeant Jack Emery, Sergeant Harold Arthur Tompsett, Flying Officer James Henry Steyn, Sergeant Charles McPherson Mitchell and Flight Sergeant Thomas Brendon Kenny died when their Anson plane crashed on Ben More Assynt in April 1941.
The twin-engined aircraft had been on a training mission during the Second World War.
Due to the remote location of the crash site in the Scottish Highlands, 25 miles north of Ullapool, the crew were buried where they lay.
Last year, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission decided to replace a stack of stones used to mark the site, with a granite marker weighing 600kg.
A crew from RAF Odiham used the Chinook’s lifting power to carry the stone to the site from the nearest road, five miles away.
Master Air Crew Steve Macdonald, from Joint Helicopter Support at RAF Odiham, said it had been a fulfilling project.
He added: “I can honestly say that in my 30 years in the Royal Air Force it’s one of the most fantastic projects I’ve been involved in because there are very few places where the crews are actually buried where they crashed and now these men will always be remembered.”
Peter Francis, from the War Graves Commission, said the commission was grateful to all who had helped.
He said: “The new stone will secure the grave site for years to come and help honour the sacrifice of six brave young men.”
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