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A World War II Love Story That You Will Never Ever Forget
« on: August 28, 2008, 10:47:26 PM »
New Zealand: Wellington College has been given $1.5 million by the 92 year old fiance of a young man killed during World War 11. It’s the largest single gift the College has ever received.

The story of this remarkable tribute is about to be published in the school’s magazine, the Lampstand, and was announced this week to the school’s donors.  The gift is from 92 year old Aucklander, Violet Elizabeth Dunn, whose fiance, Tom Paul, was at the school from 1931 to 1935.  He was killed  in England in 1944 when his damaged bomber crashed while attempting to return to base.

After Tom’s death Violet never married and carried his memory through her life.

She met Wellingtonian Tom Paul on Takapuna Beach in 1934 and they fell in love and were planning to marry.  Tom enlisted in the Territorials and then the RNZAF as a trainee pilot.  By late 1941 he was in England, flying Wellington and Lancaster bombers on night raids over Europe.

He was injured in May 1942 after flying numerous bombing raids.  On his recovery he served as a combat and flying instructor to young pilots, including many from New Zealand.  He was 26 when he died on 4 January 1944 when his damaged bomber crashed into a forest.  He is buried in England.

Violet was a dental nurse, who has fond memories of Wellington where she trained, and after the war visited England.  She found shards of metal from the plane buried in the soil.  She has given these jagged shards to Wellington College, along with his medals and school uniform.

To read more of this story, click here

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