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INTSUM - Obituary: Sir John Killick, 1919 - 2004

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It is sad to record the passing of a great man, an inspiration and raconteur of high regard.  Sir John died quite suddenly, despite having endured after a previous stroke, in February 2004, a few months short of the 60th Anniversary Commemorations.

It was inspirational, however, to have corresponded - and spoken at length to Sir John, whilst forming up 89 FSS WW2 Re-enactment Group.  I will confess now, as I did to Sir John - to his great amusement – that I had previously searched the Daily Telegraph’s Archive (in vain!) for his obituary.  

He commented that, few (apologies to Graeme Deeley and Max Hastings here) people were interested in his life before his appointment as Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Moscow at the height of the Cold War (and subsequently at NATO). 

We discussed Sem Presser’s photograph, taken on the morning of the 17 September 1944, from the streets of Arnhem.  He was further amused by my interest in the equipment he was wearing, particularly when I mentioned the drop leg holster.  “I should find the German who took it off me!” was his comment, at hearing the high price that that photograph has taken the item to!

A Renaissance character, gifted linguist and musician, rather than I struggling to find the words for a suitable tribute to the man, I’m sure that he would not object to my publishing his own précis of his life until 1945 sent to me as a research guide.  (see Sir John’s Letter)


Sir John Killick


John Killick - 1944


Sir John Killick


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