Gone but Never Forgotten
By Suzanne Newman
(Grand-Daughter -In-Law of Warrant Officer Christopher Saunders DFM RAF)

In this modern age we still have war,
And people still die as they have done before.
Vietnam, The Falklands, Afghanistan, Iraq,
Just think of the thousands who never came back.

But we stand here today for an earlier time -
For 1941 and Squadron 49,
To remember our loved-ones who flew off that day,
Not knowing their fate as they went on their way.

They were husbands and fathers, friends, souls and brothers,
And they went off to war just like so many others.
They fought for our freedom and a cause that was right,
Completing their millions by day or by night.

Down on the airstrip they joked and they laughed,
Not knowing their future as they boarded the craft.
Four brave souls went up in that plane,
Four brave souls never came home again.

For on the way back their plane was shot down
By a German fighter, near a small Dutch town,
The pilot Chris Saunders in control 'til the last,
Ensured the townsfolk weren't hurt in the blast.

He circled the plane so it crashed in a bog,
No chance to write one last time in the log.
They died as heroes as did so many others,
And fought 'til the end - that brave band of brothers.

And there in the bog their wreckage stayed covered,
`til 2006 when the plane was recovered,
When all of their bodies could at last, finally,
Be buried with honour as the way it should be.

So we stand here today over 60 years on,
From that fateful day in 1941,
We remember our loved-ones whose lives were cut short,
But take comfort that their sacrifice wasn't for nought.

So we honour you here - Stanley, Jack, James and Chris,
And want you to know that you've always been missed,
At birthdays and Christmases in years gone by,
We think of the times you weren't there and we cry.
It's for people like you we wear poppies with pride,
Reflect on brave deeds and the way that you died,
And so now in heaven you eternally rest,
`til we meet again some day - farewell and God bless.