Cornwall news Dunkirk hero was 'true legend' who led remarkable life UK news
MetiNews.Com - Eric Taylor was a hero, had a 'smile to melt' and was loved by many
Breaking News ! The heartbroken grandson of a Dunkirk hero has described him as a true legend who led a remarkable life. Tributes have been paid to 100-year-old Eric Alexander Taylor, BEM, after he passed away on Sunday evening at his home in Helston. The father, grandfather and war hero had celebrated his milestone birthday in June 2020, marked by a fly-past of Hawk jets, a drive-by from veteran motorcyclists and the Happy Birthday song performed by HMS Seahawk Band from RNAS Culdrose. Mr Taylor served with the Royal Norfolk Regiment in the early days of the Second World War before being captured on the beaches and becoming a prisoner of war. Falling back on Dunkirk in June 1940, his unit held off the enemy for as long as possible but were captured a week later. Along with 10,000 French and British prisoners of war, Mr Taylor, then aged 19, was marched to Germany where they were loaded into cattle wagons and transported to Nazi-occupied Poland. You can stay up to date on the top news and events near you with CornwallLive’s FREE newsletters – enter your email address at the top of the page. He spent the rest of the war in a number of labour camps, doing manual labour such as repairing railway lines. Mr Taylor spoke of seeing trainloads of prisoners passing on the tracks - many which would have been transports of Jews – not realising at the time that they were bound for the Nazi’s death camps. His grandson Sean Johnstone has led the tributes, calling his grandfather "his hero", saying he had a "smile to melt" and was "loved by many". Dunkirk hero's 100th birthday marked with fly-by over Cornish home View gallery In a Twitter post he said: "So after 100 years grandad passed away yesterday evening at his home in Helston. A true legend, a remarkable life, a smile to melt and loved by many. He was also my hero and I am heartbroken.
. Cheers old boy." Rebecca Wills added: "So very sorry to read this news. Such a gentleman. He will be sorely missed. Thoughts with you and the family." James Rickard paid tribute to him as "an absolute hero of a man", saying he "will be sorely missed".
Archive photo of Dunkirk hero Eric Taylor supplied by RNAS Culdrose.
(Image: RNAS Culdrose)
Steve added: "A nation should salute this man. So sorry for your loss mate. 100, fantastic life, fantastic innings. Now back together with his mates."
Source = MetiNews.Com - Cornwall