Military AircrewA forum for the professionals who fly the non-civilian hardware, and the backroom boys and girls without whom nothing would leave the ground. Army, Navy and Airforces of the World, all equally welcome here.
Totally agree. What passes for Government here recently paid for some 130 pubic serpents to travel business class to Copenhagen for a Climate Change Convention, where they achieved the square root of 5/8's of SFA; yet those who have made a much greater contribution to the Country are treated so miserably.
And would David Cameron or Theresa May please direct the 'ethnic', unshaven and dischevelled looking immigration staff at Heathrow who process non EU arrivals, not to demand from our veterans the reasons for travel, length of stay in the UK, an assurance of not wishing to work while in country and written evidence of their ability to support themselves financially while in the UK.
Not selective at all, but factual! The NZ Veterans Affairs Dept does not now and never has had responsibility to provide for servicemen from other countries, in his case that being the UK as he served in the RAF and not the RNZAF. He is not therefore a RNZAF veteran, which is the qualifying status! The qualification for the assistance given was for those RNZAF Veterans of Bomber Command.
There are possibly thousands of ex-UK service veterans who arrived in NZ post war and we would have need a fleet of aircraft to take them. I gather that , even in the UK, the government has made no offers to assist such veterans.
Perhaps it should also be mentioned that the gentleman you refer to will be going due to the generosity of the good folk of Nelson who have paid for his air fare! He declined accommodation costs because he has relatives to visit.The report you quote was out of date the very next day.
"Nelson pensioner and former Royal Air Force fighter pilot John Beeching is still in a tailspin over the level of public support for his wish to get to England in June for a memorial service.Mr Beeching, 88, initially wanted to join the New Zealand delegation as one of the few surviving ex-Bomber Command members, to be part of a dedication and unveiling of the Bomber Command Memorial in London.He learned recently he could not be considered in the official New Zealand veteran delegation because he did not belong to the Royal New Zealand Air Force when serving as part of the Bomber Command.
A storm of publicity this week has generated a huge public response with offers of donations to get Mr Beeching to London. GJ Gardner Homes announced it would provide up to $10,000 to get him and his wife, Wendy, to the ceremony, and the Cawthron Institute, where Mr Beeching works as a handyman has also offered a generous level of support."I'm still completely shattered by all this. It's absolutely unbelievable, and there's no question I'm going to that ceremony."
Nelson theatre company director TJ Ramsay, who became aware of Mr Beeching's situation through her work with him on a forthcoming Lest We Forget commemoration event, is now helping to manage the process to get Mr Beeching to London".
I stand all amazed at the lack of action, taken by our weak kneed government who can always find money for their own pet interests.
Who have the hide to come to veterans funerals and cry crocodile tears for our fallen. Refer to us as the countries treasures and refer to us as warriors.
Then go home and forget us till their next public relations exercise, and the act starts all over again.
Their lack of action and compassion shows how little they understand what such a trip would mean to those left. A last chance to meet old RAF mates, a last chance to say goodbye, a last chance to walk their old bases and perhaps a chance to meet some of their ladies.
I personally am ashamed of their lack of action, again bought to us by the same labour party who when, as they are now doing, spent all our reserves and stole, from the services super fund millions of dollars to keep their criminal spending spree on the roll, and now will not even index the super payments to the correct level.
I am also disappointed that QANTAS who has taken so many pilots and Flight engineers from the RAAF has made no move to take a goodly number back to the UK for one last ride.
The RAAF has tankers or C17's that could move perhaps all those well enough, and the hours and experience could be well used. They have the medical staff to keep the guys safe on the way, all good efforts to say thanks.
I am greatly saddened by the events and it only goes to show what a selfish bunch we have running this country.
HOW QUICKLY SOME FORGET.
I am also mindful of those ladies who lost their men, and have gone through life not knowing what happened to their men, they have not been considered.
Sad times I am afraid but made even sadder by the lack of empathy by some.
One of our family friends, who can still regale us with tales of his time in Bomber Command as a pilot, is one of the 50. Cracking tales too, like how he arranged the tactical posting of an Air Engineer who was left/right dyslexic!
Each one, man by man, has won imperishable praise. Each has gained a glorious grave, not that sepulchre of earth within they lie, but the living tomb of everlasting remembrance wherein glory is enshrined, remembrance that will live on the lips that will blossom in the deeds of their countrymen the world over.
For the whole world is the sepulchre of heroes, monuments may rise and tablets be set up to them in their own land, but on far-off shores there is an abiding memorial that no pen, or chisel has traced, it is graven not in stone or brass, but in the living hearts of humanity.
Take these men as your example. Like them, remember that posterity can only be for the free, that freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it.