Czechoslovak RAF Airmen remembered


Připomínka českosloveských letců v RAF

Czech Air Force, Army and Special Forces veterans prap Milan Bruna, mjr Vladímir Ganzar, rtm Martin Havránek, pplk Robert Hejtmánek, pprp Tomáš Hejtmánek, rtm Ivan Hipšr, prap Roman Hoňka, plk Jan Hronek, mjr Eduard Krainer, rtn Rostislav Laurenc, nrtm Vojtěch Nožička, Tomáš Mironluk, Daniel Pastuscek, pplk Petr Poledník, nrtm Michal Ratajský, rtn Jan Škorpík, rtn Tomáš Sláma, npor Josef Slavík, nrtm Libor Smékal, rtn Jiří Suda, prap Jindřich Urban, prap František Vlach, prap Ivan Vorel and Hana Dolejší. flew to England, at their own expense, to participate in the annual Remembrance Day marchpast at The Cenotaph, London. During their military service for their country, they had been deployed in Yugoslavia, Bosnia, Iraq, and Afganistan where several of them had been severely wounded. Included in the veteran’s group were widow Martina Horová and Jitka Marcinová and Ladislava Štěpánková, mothers of two Czech soldiers who were killed last Summer.

Veteráni Vzdušných sil Armády České republiky, Pozemního vojska a Speciálních jednotek prap. Milan Bruna, mjr. Vladímir Ganzar, rtm. Martin Havránek, pplk. Robert Hejtmánek, pprp. Tomáš Hejtmánek, rtm. Ivan Hipšr, prap. Roman Hoňka, plk. Jan Hronek, mjr. Eduard Krainer, rtn. Rostislav Laurenc, nrtm. Vojtěch Nožička, Tomáš Mironluk, Daniel Pastuscek, pplk. Petr Poledník, nrtm. Michal Ratajský, rtn. Jan Škorpík, rtn. Tomáš Sláma, npor. Josef Slavík, nrtm. Libor Smékal, rtn. Jiří Suda, prap. Jindřich Urban, prap. František Vlach, prap. Ivan Vorel a Hana Dolejší odletěli na své vlastní náklady do Anglie, aby se v rámci Remembrance Day zúčastnili výročního slavnostního pochodu veteránů u pomníku The Cenotaph v Londýně. Během své činné služby byli tito veteráni vysláni do Jugoslávie, Bosny, Iráku a Afghánistánu, kde bylo několik z nich vážně zraněno. Na cestě je doprovázely i vdova po válečném veteránovi Martina Horová a matky dvou českých vojáků zabitých toto léto, Jitka Marcinová a Ladislava Štěpánková.

Arriving at Stanstead airport on Saturday morning they travelled to London, for a midday wreath laying ceremony at the Bomber Command Memorial, Green Park, London, where the 55,573, airmen of Bomber Command who were killed in WW2 are remembered, 112 of them were Czechoslovaks who had served in 311 (Czechoslovak) Sqn.

V neděli ráno přicestovali na londýnské letiště Standstead a vydali se do města, kde v Green Parku položili věnce u pomníku Bomber Command. Ten je věnován 55.573 letcům Bomber Command zabitých ve druhé světové válce, mezi nimiž bylo i 112 Čechoslováků sloužících u 311. československé perutě.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Next stop was to the Battle of Britain Memorial, on the Embankment where the 88 Czechoslovak pilots who flew in that battle are commemorated, eight of whom were killed in that Battle.

Jejich další zastávkou byl památník Battle of Britain Memoria umístěný na Victoria Embankment, kde jsou připomínána i jména 88 československých pilotů, kteří se jí zúčastnili. Osm z nich v průběhu bitvy o Británii zahynulo.

After their Remembrance Day marchpast, on Remembrance Sunday, it was to the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey where they were joined by Col Jiří Niedoba and CWO Tomáš Kašpar from the Defence Office of the Czech Embassy, London. Here, in a humble but poignant act, 29 personalised Royal British Legion cross’s were laid in remembrance of their fallen comrades.

Poté, co se v neděli připojili k slavnostnímu pochodu, se vydali na Field of Remembrance ve Westminsterském opatství. Zde se k celé skupině přidali plukovník Jiří Niedoba a praporčík Tomáš Kašpar z Úseku přidělence obrany Velvyslanectví České republiky v Londýně. Během skromného, ale upřímného aktu zde na památku svých padlých spolubojovníků umístili 29 křížků s jejich jmény.

Monday morning was a reception at the Czech Embassy London,

V pondělí ráno se uskutečnila recepce na České ambasádě v Londýně.

Nearby Porchester Gate was then visited in remembrance of Jozef Gabčík and Jan Kubiš, the two Czechoslovak soldiers who had assassinated Reich-Protector Reinhard Heydrich in Prague in 1942. Then onto Stanstead for their flight back to Prague.

Poté nedaleko Porchester Gate navštívili pomník Jozefa Gabčíka a Jana Kubiše, dvou československých vojáků, kteří v roce 1942 v Praze odstranili říšského protektora Reindharda Heydricha. Z letiště Stanstead pak odletěli zpět do Prahy.

Our sincere thanks to all of them for their initiative in remembering the Czechoslovak RAF airmen, whilst on their short visit to London and to Československý Legionář – SPIA who organised this visit.

Všichni zmiňovaní si zaslouží mnoho díků za to, že během své krátké návštěvy Londýna našli čas pro připomínku československých letců v RAF, a také občanské sdružení Československý legionář – SIPA, které celou akci organizovalo.





This entry was posted in 310 Sqd, 311 Sqd, 312 Sqd, Battle of Britain, Ceremony, Not Forgotton. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Czechoslovak RAF Airmen remembered

  1. Richard J Petranek says:

    A wonderful article and I am so happy that all current and former airmen were honored. Let us not forget their sacrifice.
    My father who was from Chicago and whose first language was Czech liberated Pizen in 1945 and was able to meet his grandfather who lived near Plana.

  2. Bruce Thomson says:

    Dear Martin, I’ve been to visit the Garden of Remembrance in the Abbey recently and was heartened to see Stars of David among the other poppy crosses. Many people visit to remember their own loved ones so this would be a great time for you to place your loved one’s Star of David there too.

  3. Petr Doktor says:

    Hmmm why the Czech president Milos Zeman didn’t show up?? He was drinking vodka at the Russian Embassy or visited his past communists buddies….

  4. Jan PETR says:

    Thank you all for remembering and honouring the colleagues of my father,Frantisek PETR, who served with 311 Squadron in Wellington bombers .Thankfully he and crew survived as P.O.W. My respect.

  5. Simon says:

    Excellent piece. The sacrifice of these men should never be forgotten

  6. martinsugarman says:

    Great to Remember and rightly so, but see loads of Crosses and yet I do not see one Star of David on the Czechoslovakia Remembrance plot for the Jewish Free Czechoslovak Fighters who died. They were not all Christians. In these days of inclusivity and rising anti-Semitism, it would be courteous and comradely to Remember our men and women too?

    Martin Sugarman (Archivist of AJEX – Jewish War Vets of the UK)

    [Moderators comment: Martin, the RBL crosses shown in the photo were placed by family members, or comrades, of those Czechoslovaks, or current day Czech Republic, soldiers and airmen who either served in Czechoslovak forces during WW2, or on post WW2 deployment in Kosova, Iraq, Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan. Have respect for those family members and comrades by not hijacking their choice with your own agenda]

Please leave your comment on this article.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.