Aldenham School, Founded 1597

Aldenham Old Boys remembered 75 years on

The School paused during Assembly on Monday as the Headmaster commemorated two OAs who were in Normandy 75 years ago this week. One of them was very well known. General Sir Richard Nelson “Windy” Gale (School House 1911-13) was the Commander of the 1st Parachute Regiment and 6th Airborne Division. He landed in Normandy shortly after midnight on 6th June 1944 and was the first General to be back on mainland Europe. His meticulous planning contributed heavily to the success of Operation Overlord. He went on to serve with great distinction after the war was over. His commemorative bust stands outside School House today.

The other former pupil commemorated, Lt Trevor JF Tooley OA (Beevor’s 1930-35) remains in Normandy to this day. He was killed on the first day of Operation Overlord when his unit, the 1st Battalion of the Suffolk Regiment, sustained heavy losses on Sword Beach. He died aged just 27, leaving a wife and two year old daughter. He is remembered with honour in La Delivrande War Cemetery, Calvados, just a short distance from where he landed on French soil and is one of 116 OAs who went to fight in the Second World War and who never returned.

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