Tim Chapman has two personal connections with Normandy which inspired him to take part in this year's Big Battlefield Bike Ride and retrace his family's history.
Major William Murray White of the Highland Light Infantry, #78061, was killed in the early hours of 21/7/44 at Mondrainville. He was buried that day in an orchard to the north of the village behind St Denis Church. Subsequently he was buried at the St Manvieu War Cemetery in Grave # VII.F.18, near Caen.
"Murray White was my great uncle and the brother of Ruby and Russell White, both of whom were also in Normandy in World War Two.
Ruby White, my grandmother, was in the Red Cross and served in the casualty clearing stations in Normandy. She served throughout 1944 and 1945. She entered the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp with the Red Cross shortly after it was liberated. She survived the war and was a fine lady who I was privileged to know and love.
"Not directly connected to Normandy, my Grandfather was Lt Colonel Robert (“Bobby”) Symonds Burton, MC. He was in the Royal Artillery of the 8th Army and was taken as POW in Tobruk 2. He was in POW camp in Italy from which he managed to escape on the second attempt. In summer 1944 he took refuge with Italian locals. After repatriation he re-joined the Allied forces in Northern Europe and fought this campaign to the end of the war."