Welcome to the Royal Wootton Bassett Branch - No. 2619
One of our Branch members - Mr. Ken Scott, Honorary President of the Royal Wootton Bassett Branch, sadly passed away recently at the remarkable age of 99. He reached his 99th birthday on 31 May 2015.
He was a very well known character in the town of Royal Wootton Bassett for his work in the community and having, in previous years, held the office of Mayor of the Town. The town, the community and the Royal British Legion meant a lot to him. He was a remarkable man and could hold a very good conversation on many subjects, some of which he held some very strong views.
One of the things most dear to his heart was the Garden of Remembrance which he, with the help of many other Branch members, raised money to build and maintain. He was also very dedicated to collecting for the Poppy Appeal and along with his wife he spent many hours collection for the cause. After the lose of his wife he still continued taking part in the collections right up until he was 97 years old.
During the repatriations many cards and memorabilia were left on the War Memorial and Ken, to preserve them from the weather, took it upon himself to collect them and put them all in albums which he presented to the Town Council.
During June of 2014 he made a return journey to Normandy along with other veterans to re-live the memories and comrade spirit that they experienced over 70 years ago.
They left Portsmouth on 4 June 2014 and spent the next four days reminiscing and re-living those very sad and memorable days when so many soldiers losted their lives.
Ken looked back and marvelled at the fact he was one of the lucky ones. It was a great achievement that at the age of 98 he was able to return once again to those shores and take part that event, taking time to reflect and remember those who were lost and give thanks for their own safe return. It was one of his ambitions to make that particular journey and he was determined to achieve it, come what may!
Ken could relate to you many stories about his time in the war years. He served with the Suffolk Regiment in the Western Desert in North Africa as a member of the 8th Army 30 Corps and also fought in the battle of El Alamein. In 1944 he was one of the great number of soldiers who took part in the D Day landings.
At the Normandy event he wore the same type of uniform he wore during his service in the Army and his comment was "I first came to France wearing this type of uniform and I am now leaving dressed the same. Farewell France, Au revoir!"
Below are some photographs of Ken as a young soldier and another one with his Medal of Honour. He must have felt a very proud man.
The Branch will miss Ken very much, we are proud to have know him and I am sure his family are very proud having a father who has achieved so much in his life time.
His funeral will take place at St. Bartholomews Church, Royal Wootton Bassett, on Wednesday 26th August 2015 at 1.00pm.
Ken - as a young soldier
98 years old 31 May 2014
and a close-up of medal
Wednesday 26th August 2015
Today we attended Ken's Funeral not just to mourn him but to celebrate his life.
The Service was well attended by Members of the Branch together with Mr Mike Swabey, County Chairman, and Representatives from other Branches throughout Wiltshire.
It was a very good service with members of his family paying tribute to him as a father, father-in-law, and grandfather. They said he was a man, who during his life, fought for things he believed in and he reamained a fighter to the end.