MCS was informed by John S Riggs OW that his friend Harold S Abbott passed away on 22 August 2009, aged 90. Harold was a New College chorister and joined MCS about the same time as John.

Harold and John joined the Territorial Army in the 1930s. Harold joined the Queens Victoria Rifles and John joined the Artists Rifles. As soon as WWII started in September 1939 they found themselves no longer ‘weekend soldiers but in it for the duration’, as the saying went. Harold was commissioned in the Middlesex Regiment, and had a lively career in its 10th machine gun battalion in the 51st Highland Division. He was at the Great Battle of Alamein in Egypt, and heavily involved in the intense fighting to drive the African Corps and the Italians for many hundreds of miles through the North African deserts into Tunisia. On the way he was wounded, and eventually had to be repatriated. For the remainder of the war he was an instructor at the Central Machine Gun School at Netheravon in Wiltshire. It is typical that he never claimed a War Directivity Pension.

In the following years he lived in Ealing and worked for the Sun Life Insurance Co of Canada. Lately he lived in North Leach.

Our thoughts go out to his wife, June, and to both of their daughters.