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Commemorating D Day at Galanos House – 6th June 2024

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I had the great honour of taking part in the D Day service at Galanos House.  I paid tribute to Victor Goodwin, a resident at Galanos and D Day Veteran. 

Victor was only just 19 when he went to France on June 6th, 1944.  He spoke fluent French and was serving in the Durham Light Infantry. Vera who much later was to become his wife, was at that time a novice waiting to take her vows and working in the catering division.

 Victor landed on Sword beach and was thankful to reach the shore.  He couldn’t swim and was quite short so had to wade to shore, mostly underwater, with his gun held high above his head. He was soaked but said “the sun was out and I soon got dry”.  He remembers the seasickness to this very day.  Luckily, he didn’t experience any fighting until he got 4 miles inland but then he was involved in a battle in a cornfield.  Victor remembers General Eisenhower coming to talk to his troop and saying that they (the British and American troops) must all get on together.  Apparently, the American troops had huge buckets of orange juice whilst the British only had water!

 Victor fought with his troop all the way through France and Belgium right up to the German border.  It is here that his hip was hit by a bullet, and he had to be flown home with fellow American soldiers that had been wounded.

After the service and lunch I stopped by to talk to Victor (99) ad his wife Vera (96). An amazing couple who recently celebrated their 70th Wedding anniversary.  It turns out Victor has a wicked sense of humour, as you can see in the photos.

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