Representatives from across the RAF and the Royal Auxiliary Air Force families joined with local councillors and dignitaries in Spalding, Lincolnshire on Monday, to mark the unveiling of a long-awaited memorial.
Pilot Officer George Furniss was just 29 years old when his Gloster Meteor caught fire above the bustling market town, spelling potential disaster for the civilians below. George steered the stricken aircraft towards open fields on the outskirts of the town, leaving himself unable to eject safely.
The Meteor crashed, and tragically, George was killed instantly. His twin daughters were less than a year old at the time and grew up knowing little of the circumstances around the crash and their father’s untimely death.
In 2019, the sisters attended the 75th anniversary flypast of a B-17 memorial in Sheffield and decided it was time to finally honour George’s bravery.
It was their dedicated research, along with help from Spalding locals, South Holland District Council and the Royal Auxiliary Air Force Foundation which enabled the creation of the memorial by Gary Huggins, erected in the field where George’s Meteor finally crashed.
The service was led by Padre Flight Lieutenant Philip Johnson and attended by members of the organising committee including the Lord Porter of Spalding CBE and Councillor Angela Newton MBE, who recalls seeing the crash as a young girl.