Cadet researched WW2 Air Cadet for Remembrance

10 Nov 2017

As part of a Remembrance project Corporal Luca Chadwick of Ely Squadron researched a fellow air cadet who was killed during The Second World War and was buried in a Commonwealth War Grave at St Peters Church, West Row.  

Luca discovered that Pelham Rolfe was an Air cadet of 1124 (Mildenhall) Squadron, Air Training Corps who died through enemy action on the 19th March 1945.  

Cadet Rolfe was a passenger in a lorry on his way home from an ATC activity at RAF Bircham Newton, Norfolk on the 17th March 1945 when the lorry was attacked by a German ME109 Fighter Aircraft. 

Cadet Rolfe was caught by the enemy aircraft's machine gun fire as it strafed the lorry and he died from his wounds two days later on the 19th March 1945 aged just 15. 

Rolfe was given a full military funeral and cadets from his own squadron carried his coffin as well as providing a guard of honour.  

Across the country many young men who were part of the Air Training Corps went on to join the RAF during the war as soon as they came of age. 

Cadet Rolfe was one of 55 Air Cadets known to have been killed through enemy action and who were given the honour of being buried in a Commonwealth War Grave in the U.K. 

Rolfe died doing what he loved and what Air Cadets still do today wearing the uniform of the Royal Air Force with pride. 

Luca, who researched the project, said: “At this time of National Remembrance it is important that we all remember him as well as all of those who made the ultimate sacrifice in defence our of nation and our freedom, lest we forget.”

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