A decorated Sanctuary Care resident who served with the RAF has shared his memories of the Second World War ahead of VE Day.
Brian Cookson received the Arctic Star medal - in recognition of his service during patrols in the Arctic Circle - in November 2013 at Pershore’s Heathlands Residential Care Home, which provides care for the elderly, including residential care and dementia care.
On the anniversary of VE Day (May 8 1945) – when the war was declared over – the 98-year-old shares memories of the North Atlantic patrols with 612 Squadron Whitley, searching for deadly U-Boats.
Brian said: “I was at the RAF’s coastal headquarters in Scotland when the war was declared over. It was a great relief – I and the people around me were delighted.”
In 1943 Brian transferred to 190 Squadron where he searched for U-Boats on Catalinas –a widely used sea plane of the Second World War.
Speaking of his missions he said: “We were simply doing what we had to do for our country. However I can only describe my time on the convoys as absolute hell.”
The Arctic Star, which acknowledges the bravery of those who served in the Arctic convoys, is a retrospective honour announced in 2012.
Anita Fletcher, the manager at Heathlands said: “The bravery of Brian and those who served to protect their country is something that should never be forgotten and we will be thinking of our veterans and the sacrifices they made on this special day.”