Remembering the Telegraphist Air Gunners
Tributes as Southport World War II Royal Navy hero dies aged 86 Remembering WWII Veteran Ken Sims (1922-2008) December 5, 2008 Article in The Southport Visitor (UK) By Lyndsay Young A WORLD WAR II Royal Navy hero from Southport who dedicated his life to the air service has died. Ken   Sims,   86,   who   was   secretary   of   the   Telegraphist   Air   Gunners   (TAG)   Association,   passed   away   at   Southport   hospital   after developing a stomach tumour. The   widower   lost   his   wife   Eileen   nine   years   ago   and   leaves   his   daughter   Maureen   Fear,   his   grandchildren   as   well   as   great- grandchildren. Ken was born in Fulham and served in the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy, where he trained as a telegraphist air gunner in 1939. Among his duties were air gunnery, communicating by radio using Morse code and from the aircraft to ships by Aldis Lamp. He   was   awarded   the   Distinguished   Service   Medal   for   participating   in   torpedo   attacks   against   enemy   ships   off   the Albanian   Coast in 1941. In 1944 he met Eileen at the Scarisbrick Hotel when stationed at Woodvale and the pair married a year later. Ken served for 12 years, while Eileen remained at their Southport home. In   1953   the   couple   moved   down   south   when   Ken   left   the   Royal   Navy   in   1953.   Here   he   worked   for   a   company   designing   radar equipment for the Royal Navy. On   his   retirement   the   pair   moved   back   to   Southport   living   at   Emmanuel   Road.   When   Eileen   passed   away   Ken   moved   to   Granville Road in Birkdale. He   was   a   founder   member   of   the TAG Association,   where   he   became   secretary   as   well   as   archivist.   Ken   also   wrote   and   published ‘Telegraphist Air Gunner.” His   good   friend   Edward   Carter,   84,   who   lives   in   Westbourne   Road,   had   grown   up   streets   away   from   Ken   in   Fulham   and   had   served in the Navy but the two met when they retired. Edward, who knew Ken for 15 years and was also a member of the TAG Association, described Ken as a “well respected” man. He said: “I shall miss him. He was almost one of the family. “He always sent my wife a great big bunch of flowers at Christmas and her birthday. “He was kind-hearted and generous. Nothing was too much trouble for him.” His   funeral   will   be   held   today   (Friday)   at   St   Patrick’s   RC   Church   in   Churchtown,   followed   by   a   reception   at   the   Hesketh   Arms, which will be attended by friends and members of the TAG Association.
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