We are sad to report that David Hywel (Dai) Williams of 47(B) Entry passed away on the 6th June 2023 aged 95. Perhaps the best way Dai would want to be remembered would be this, written in his own words:
“After passing out from Cranwell in 1949 my first squadron was 120 which flew Lancasters and then Shackletons, based at RAF Leuchars and Kinloss from 1949 to 1951. After two years as an ADC in Plymouth I flew Canberras in Gütersloh, Germany with 102 Sqn and then returned in 1956 to fly Valiants with 90 Sqn in Suffolk. The highlight of my Valiant tour was taking part in the Paris Air Show in 1959. After the Valiants were grounded in 1961 and having spent 2,400 hours in the air, there was no prospect of any more. I had ground tours at Marham, Cottesmore, Brampton and finally back to Honington
At Mountbatten (Plymouth) in 1953, I met and married Joan, a gorgeous WRAF officer. She was an accountant officer and from then on I did not have to worry about the family finances. We had two sons and one daughter (two doctors and a golfer).
After retiring from the RAF in 1972, I spent two years getting a Cert Ed from Cambridge. After three years in a Middle School and two in a Secondary Modern, I found my niche in an all-boys, all-boarders prep school - one of the top ten in the country. I stayed for ten years teaching boys Science, Sums, English, Latin and coaching them at Cricket, Rugby, Tennis, Squash and Shooting. I got the school to third place in the prep-school shooting league. (The St David’s Shield).
Fully retired in 1989, we lived at Great Livermere near Bury St Edmunds in a house with a 3/4 acre garden we bought on my first tour at RAF Honington. I was the under-gardener and we kept goats, geese and guinea-fowl. I enjoyed my hobbies of woodwork, watercolours, bridge, computers and crosswords. In the 1990s, Joan and I researched golf in France for a tour operator - seven years playing on the best courses, staying at the best hotels and being entertained lavishly by the French tourist board in London.
Of all my flying I think the most enjoyable was in Coastal Command. Most of it was done at low level over the sea and the Lancaster was a delight to fly. From take-off, the captain was on his own acting on any advice from the crew whereas V-Force flying had to be precisely to time, height and bomb-fall. Flying the Anson was also fun because it was mostly at 2,000 feet: low enough to admire the countryside below. However, everything considered, the most worthwhile was the V-Force tour that, with a little help from the U.S. Strategic Air Command, helped deter a Third World War.”