04-12-09, 04:54 AM
One of the last actors of his generation, and by all accounts a very modest man, especially about his distinguished war record.
04-12-09, 05:18 AM
And born in Dublin, although his people were English, I believe. Probably best-known for the role of Wing Commander Guy Gibson in The Dam Busters. I originally saw that on the cinema and enjoyed it. A few years ago, it was shown on TV and I couldn't believe what I was seeing. Gibson's dog was called ******, as were many black dogs years ago, and they gave the same codename to one of the dams they were attacking with the Barnes Wallis bouncing bomb. Obviously concerned about racism, they'd edited out all instances of the use of the name, with an effect on the continuity of the film which you can well imagine. It was bloody silly. They slipped up, though. After each attack on the dams, the result came over the Tannoy in Morse code, and they'd overlooked the one code-named ******, so that the offending word was clearly audible to anyone who, possibly as a legacy of the Boy Scouts or Girl Guides, could read it.
He jumped in the second wave of the attack on what became known as Pegasus Bridge, one of the most important actions of D-Day and brilliantly described in the Stephen Ambrose book of the same name. I always liked the fact that, in the film "The Longest Day", he was given the role of his old "boss", Major John Howard, and an actor playing Richard Todd reports to him.
Blimey, lost both sons by suicide. That's grim.