Malta Memories - I wonder what happened to.....?, Do you remember.....?



I often have requests from people who mention names from the past in the hope that someone somewhere will remember, on this page I will list these requests. Please drop them a line if you can help. Where email addresses are shown, please substitute at for @ and dot for . omitting spaces where they appear, in the hope to avoid spamming.



Bob Lemmon writes........

My Grandfather Henry George Pope was a Royal Marine, and from December 1932 served aboard HMS Coventry. In February of 1934 the marines left ship at Sliema and proceeded to the camp at Gjan Tuffieha, returning after one week. They re-embarked the cruiser by cutter, but I have no idea how they travelled to the camp. Is it likely that they marched?

You can imagine that I was particularly interested in your photo of Ghajn Tuffieha camp in 1933, the first that I have seen.

Bobl1 at talktalk dot net (please substitute at for @ and dot for . omitting spaces where they appear)

Photo shown below from fotopic website,







Jodie Barton, in Canada, has requested that I show these memories of her Dad W.S. (Bill) Barton on this page.........

My aunt in the UK recently passed away and left me boxes and boxes of 'things' with sentimental value. Some of it was meaningless to me, but for the fact it meant something to 'her'. What I was thrilled to receive was an album of pics that were taken when my dad was stationed in Hal Far, in Malta in 1935 and 1936.  They are in excellent shape and are captioned on the back with the type of plane, the date and the location. My dad passed away 20 years ago, and I was really young then, compared to now, and I never thought to ask about his time in the Royal Air Force. Now that I have a son in law, in the Canadian Air Force, I was sorry that I didn't have more stories to tell him, pictures to show him.

I now have some wonderful pictures that I can share with him and one of the 'block' where my dad lived in '35 and '36.  And there is a close-up of the cockpit of one of the planes he flew.  In the back it says ... (in my dad's own handwriting) 'the bombing cockpit in the machine I fly in.  K4598.  Christmas 1935.' Seeing his handwriting, seeing the pics, gives me Goosebumps.

He and I were so very close, I being an only child.  He was my best friend.  He passed away June 9th 1989. From his hat or his jacket, I have his 'wings' which are displayed in front of the urn holding his ashes, along with his favourite tie and scarf.

Growing up, I remember him in uniform, and there are pics of him holding me as a newborn, in uniform.

He also did, with a couple of his pilot friends, an advert for Camel cigarettes, where they are showing the packet and they are all smoking.  It appeared in Life magazine, but I am not sure when.  He is wearing a leather helmet.  See for yourself.

Now that I am the Grandmother of four and, keenly aware of my mortality, I would like to leave things I hold dear, to my son who is a firefighter and my daughter, a therapist, and her husband who is in the military. When I showed him my dad's wings, (he got his June 12th 09, my daughter's 30th birthday) he was very impressed. My grandson William is obsessed with airplanes.  He is 2 1/2 and says he is going to fly F-18s when he grows up, like his daddy. I smile when I think of what my dad would say, if he were to see the cockpit of the plane my son in law flies.

Not sure when, probably 10 years or so ago, my Aunt from Ipswich, in Suffolk, my dad's only sister, sent me a teddy bear, dressed in the RAF uniform.  Wish I had a picture to show you.  It is made from the same material my dad's uniforms were made from.  I treasure it.

My dad was a Flight Lieutenant and a Squadron Leader, and was in the RAF from the age of 18, and he met my mom in 1942, when he came to Canada with some fellow pilots for a visit. In 1945 when I was born, he was still in the Military.

My dad joined the Navy when he was 16, and only when he was 20, (I think) did he join the RAF.  His ship was the HMS Fisgard.  I know that because as a 'going away' gift from the pastor of his church, in Cardiff, Wales, he was given a Bible, which I have and treasure. That was in 1928.

I remember seeing a 'log' book at my mom's house.  Will have to look for it when I go to visit on Monday.  She is 92 and doing well.  I'm an only child, and was the apple of my father's eye.  He was my best friend.  He taught me all about the opera, and I could identify arias when I was 5 years old. Hard to believe, had he lived, my dad would be 98, come September 24th.  But you know, it seems like only yesterday, he held me in his arms, and we danced.

We didn't have a movie camera when he was alive, so I have nothing to enjoy but for an audio cassette made at Christmas in 85.  He is singing Oh Little Town of Bethlehem and Oh Come All Ye Faithful, in his amazing voice.  He was the choir master at his Church for many years. Every Christmas, when the family gathers, we play the cassette, and there's a lot of tears, because we miss him, but we love hearing his voice. I find myself playing it any time of the year when I want to remember what he sounded like. 

After he left the military, he worked as a commercial pilot for Trans Canada Airlines, now called Air Canada for many years, until he retired.

I would love to hear from anyone who might have known my dad, or who has pics of him that I don't have.

daizee at videotron dot ca

Jodie Barton - Daughter of W.S. (Bill) Barton






David Ogden, asks...

Seeking info' about my father PTE William Ogden T/163857 Royal Army Service Corps. served with the 32 Company MT yard in the Ravelin, Valletta in Malta from 1940 to 1944. I think he was a Mechanic but not sure, if you could help it would be most appreciated.

david at ogden1 dot fsnet dot co dot uk



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