We were delighted to help a brother and sister whose father had died in France following the D-Day landings, meet with a Green Howard Normandy veteran.
Fred Hart and Rosemary Casson visited the museum to talk to Ken Cooke in an effort to find out more about events in Northern France following the invasion on 6 June 1944.
Their father, Cpl Frederick Henry Hart served in the 6th Battalion. He died on 18 June 1944 and is buried in Ryes Military Cemetery, near Caen.
Although Ken, pictured right, who also served in the 6th Bn, did not remember their father, he was able to bring the events of the days following D-Day vividly to life so that Fred and Rosemary could get an insight of what their dad was experiencing as the Allies advanced inland that summer 73 years ago. They shared letters, photographs and precious family documents, including an encouraging note Frederick wrote to his younger sister, Vi, encouraging her to, “keep the good work up, and when the war is over I shall expect you to be in a position to be thinking about carving a niche for yourself in this funny old world of ours” as well as what they believe is the last letter he wrote to their mother.
The Green Howards D-Day link is one which has always run through their family. Their elder sister; Doris Martin’s godfather was Stanley Hollis, the only recipient of a Victoria Cross on D-Day, and a famous Green Howard soldier.
The Harts are waiting to receive the specific details of their father’s service from the MOD Disclosures Department. We look forward to welcoming them back to the museum when they have that information so that we can help piece together more of Cpl Hart’s Green Howards story.