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Thread: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

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    Default Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Dear Forum Members,

    I know it's late here in Blighty, but I wanted to make a brief introduction before the match sticks give way. I have just found, and registered for membership of this wonderful forum, whilst undertaking early research on 'the life and times' of Captain Sir Benjamin Chave, K.B.E.

    Firstly, I found Brian's welcome message so informally friendly, helpful and, yes, welcoming. I hope you will be kind to me as a landlubber aka retired army officer with shaky sea legs, although I am quite able to take a bit of 'joshing'.

    I do have something of a merchant navy pedigree as my GG Grandfather was Captain John SYKES, Master Mariner (1824 - 1868), from Kirby Ireleth, Lancs. And, my Grandfather, Paul Edward Sykes, was awarded a Silver Life Saving medal by Finland for his part in the rescue of the crew of the Finnish steamer 'Esbo', at Bootle Cumbria in October 1935.

    As said, I retired from the army in 2001 and then worked for HMG overseas, ending my proper working life as Chief of Staff of an EU Policing and Justice Mission in Palestine in 2015. We now live a life of rural idyll in the Quantock Hills, Somerset .... we can see the sea at Watchett from the top of the hill opposite the house!

    I mentioned that I am interested in Sir Benjamin Chave (no relation) - in short, I found a post relating to him on this forum i.e., that of Penny Alexander, on 17 September 2017, titled “Capt Sir Benjamin Chave KBE”. That led me to cruise around your forum and I was really taken with how helpful and friendly you all are (sorry if I sound like I am blowing smoke up your chuffs, but it is true).

    What my time here also made me realise is that I know nothing apart from what I have said about my GG grandfather Captain John Sykes. My mother is now 92, living with us, but has mixed altzheimers and vascular dementia and can no longer remember our family history (nor indeed happened 5 minutes ago) - why do we leave things too late to talk about.

    So, I guess, it will be Chave and Sykes that occupy my beginnings here.

    Kind regards,

    Owen

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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Of course the Sykes mentioned has nothing to do with Bill Sykes of Oliver Twist fame. With names like those mentioned no doubt the ones so good at it will be half way there by now. Welcome to the site at least you don’t come in camouflage . Cheers JS
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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Hello Owen
    Welcome here and thank you for your Posing.
    Always good to have new Blood here no matter if not Merchant Navy, its a site for one and all.
    I hope you will keep on Enjoying the various Threads and that your Searching for whoever will be fruitful.

    If at any time you may need some help, just holler and if we can we will assist where possible!
    Happy readings!
    Cheers

    This is the Link you talk of on our site!

    Capt Sir Benjamin Chave KBE (merchant-navy.net)
    Senior Site Moderator-Member and Friend of this Website

    R697530

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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    #3 Hope ‘Posing’ was a typo Doc.
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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Welcome aboard, someone from another Service always welcome and we look forward to hearing about your exploits, those you can and cannot tell your children, or grandchildren! If you've perused a few posts you'll have realised a lot of us are long in the tooth, although many have teeth much younger than themselves, we all used to be taller, we all wear rose tinted spectacles, our stories are quite wild but 99.9% true, we are invariably not politically correct, we can give and received insults (those without malice) and as long as you spell bastard as barsteward we know you like us.

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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Once sailed with another army bloke , however may have been the competition as was the Salvation Army a very reputable group. I would never have known if he hadn’t been outside my house one time at home on a Sunday morning being a member of the band , he knew I lived there and was trying to hide behind a bigger body playing the trumpet, just to embarrass him I opened the bedroom window and shouted down “ Is that you Derrick” , thought he was going to shrivel up and disappear. Would not have believed he was Sally Ann judging by his girlfriends in the States . Was during the time of the Vietnam War when a lot of their troops were overseas and he made the most of it. JS.
    Used to kid him on Vietnam Rose would get him JS
    PS today my driving Licence expired so am having a wake at the moment , however will not bury it until the official notice has been confirmed . JS
    PS if I can’t drive at least I can drink
    Last edited by j.sabourn; 23rd January 2023 at 01:52 PM.
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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Well, thanks for your welcome. For the record, my teeth are still my own, albeit they owe a lot to the NHS filling service and I can still walk unaided, unless I have been at the single malt. I refuse to wear my prescription glasses, but have been discovered reading the cooking instructions, on Tesco's finest, with a magnifying glass. My hair is clinging on at the sides, so I am usually to be found in my cap. I am still 'under orders', albeit now from my Domestic Chief of Staff. I am No. 5 in the family priority order, after my beloved D/CoS, our two horses and our standard poodle (think of a woolly black sheep, no fancy clipping for him).

    I am finding it hard to think of stories I could share with the grand children, at least with parents present, because, of course, I have always been a fine upstanding man free of any faults, character flaws and vices (ahem). Even that time in the High Commission pool, late one night, with the crew of a BA 747, I kept my trousers on and sipped my Earl Grey very politely.

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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Welcome aboard Owen, Two of my brothers were in the army albeit at the insistence of the Brit Govt, funny story, the army removed one of my brothers kidneys, when he told me I though it a bit much, if they were short of kidneys for breakfast they should have gone to the local butchers, my nephew was a Major in the tank regiment, lt being a vast distance from our usual MN mob, that is my Dad, brother and me.
    Cheers Des
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    Lest We Forget

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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    My wife’s cousin went out to Korea with the governments insistance as a 2nd lieutenant being an ex university graduate , he later carried on in the reserves and reached the rank of colonel of the DLI , he also became Mayor of Durham city at one time . The DLI of course no longer exists as a working regiment , mores the pity. His name if
    Anyone lived in the area was John Lightley , both he and his wife died a few years ago with Covid , and if anyone wondered why the flags in the city were at half mast that was the reason. Cheers JS
    Last edited by j.sabourn; 24th January 2023 at 01:41 AM.
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    Default Re: Good evening from a landlocked retired army officer

    Quote Originally Posted by Des Taff Jenkins View Post
    Welcome aboard Owen, Two of my brothers were in the army albeit at the insistence of the Brit Govt, funny story, the army removed one of my brothers kidneys, when he told me I though it a bit much, if they were short of kidneys for breakfast they should have gone to the local butchers, my nephew was a Major in the tank regiment, lt being a vast distance from our usual MN mob, that is my Dad, brother and me.
    Cheers Des
    Goodness Des, the post war rationing measures were harsh indeed where the army was concerned. Good job it wasn't liver on the menu. I suspect that when your nephew was battened down in his tank, it probably felt like being in the engine room of a MN steam ship.

    Thanks for your welcome.

    Owen

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by j.sabourn View Post
    My wife’s cousin went out to Korea with the governments insistance as a 2nd lieutenant being an ex university graduate , he later carried on in the reserves and reached the rank of colonel of the DLI , he also became Mayor of Durham city at one time . The DLI of course no longer exists as a working regiment , mores the pity. His name if
    Anyone lived in the area was John Lightley , both he and his wife died a few years ago with Covid , and if anyone wondered why the flags in the city were at half mast that was the reason. Cheers JS
    Dear me, what a sad and sobering COVID story - no way for a brave old soldier to leave us. Sounds like he 'lived his life' though.

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