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Locked Topic Death of Wing Commander Bill Todd RAF Ret'd (Read 14,327 times)
Richard Jenner
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Death of Wing Commander Bill Todd RAF Ret'd
08.08.2007 at 21:11:27
 
It is my sad duty to report the somewhat third hand news of the demise of Bill Todd. Geoff Dalton 'phoned me this evening having been to the funeral near Perth today (8 August) - Geoff had seen a notice in the Telegraph yesterday and had dropped everything to be at the funeral - I fear he may have been the only ex-RAF colleague to have attended.

I'm sure that there are many of us who will remember Bill with affection - he was an immense character.

I've pasted the notice from the Telegaph below:
Quote:
August 7th, 2007

TODD
Wing Commander William Drummond (retired), peacefully at Blairgowrie Cottage Hospital after a long illness, borne with great courage, on 2nd August 2007, Bill, beloved husband of Christine, much loved father of Judith and Alistair, dear grandfather to Andrew, Louise, Fraser and Angus and great grandfather to Olivia. Funeral Service at Perth Crematorium on Wednesday, 8th August at 3 p.m. to which all friends are respectfully invited. Family flowers only please, but donations if so desired to the G.P. Unit, Blairgowrie Cottage Hospital.



Richard Jenner
  
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michael moore
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Re: Death of Wing Commander Bill Todd RAF Ret'd
Reply #1 - 17.08.2007 at 14:11:31
 
I was saddened to hear that Bill Todd has gone. †He was a noticably decent and gentle man and I am sure that he will be much missed by many people. †As Edna St Vincent Millay said:

Down, down, down into the darkness of the grave
Gently they go, the beautiful, the tender, the kind;
Quietly they go, the intelligent, the witty, the brave.
I know. †But I do not approve. †And I am not resigned.
  
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Gil Stenson
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Re: Death of Wing Commander Bill Todd RAF Ret'd
Reply #2 - 03.12.2007 at 22:44:49
 
I also am saddened to hear of Bill's death. He was a great guide and supported me when I arrived at Boulmer. He will be missed.
  
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Gerry Dinmore
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Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #3 - 07.08.2007 at 11:46:14
 
Read in the Daily Telegraph today 7 Aug. Bill Todd died 2 Aug in Blairgowrie Cottage Hospital. Funeral on Wed 8 Aug at Perth Crematorium at 3pm. All friends invited. Sad loss of a lovely man
Gerry Dinmore
  
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Kevin Pellatt
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #4 - 07.08.2007 at 19:04:44
 
How very sad. †Gerry is right, a lovely man and I have very happy memories of working for him at Boulmer. †He tried very hard to keep reprobates like Splin and I in check, and taught us much. †I personally owe him a great deal and he will be sadly missed by all his friends and colleagues.
  
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Jan Cobb
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #5 - 07.08.2007 at 21:37:29
 
I, too, have very fond memories of Bill at Buchan, especially when he returned my MC CR CQ to me some time after a visit by ADGEEB headed by you, Gerry! A lovely man, who will be sorely missed

Jan
  
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Mike Greatorex
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #6 - 08.08.2007 at 06:57:19
 
Very sad news.  Cry

I was another who learned much from the big man and I consider myself fortunate to have known him. 

RIP Dave.

Mike
  
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Jan Cobb
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #7 - 08.08.2007 at 07:22:11
 
Gerry Newton sent this comment:

Quote:
Very sad news - he and I had a strange relationship, mainly on the telephone between Sectors, until we actually met when he told me I wasn't such a stroppy git as he thought I was!

A sad loss for a true gent, our condolences to the family.
Gerry


Jan
  
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Mike Clarke
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #8 - 08.08.2007 at 09:04:44
 
Very sad news indeed. I served with Bill at Boulmer as RTO when he was Wg Cdr Ops and I owe much to him. He was a true gentleman and I admired him greatly.

I send my sincere condolences to Christine.
  
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Mike Good
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #9 - 08.08.2007 at 10:20:43
 
Back in those unenlightened days when Controllers also had to qualify as Display Controllers, I was sitting across the Buchan bridge from Conex Bill trying to decide what kind of plaque to slap on this track that had inconsideratley appeared on the VDU, without any Norweigan pre-warning, somewhere north-west of the Faeroes. †As the magic 2-minute point approached, Bill rang me and said "Mike, do something. It doesn't really much matter what it is, but the rest of us can't start sorting out your mistake until you do". †The fact that we desperately needed a separate Reporting sub-specialisation was just one of the many things that Bill taught me! †RIP Bill, and when you get up there, tell Winslade I really don't appreciate him bequeathing me his clumsiness!
  
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Alec Hunt
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #10 - 08.08.2007 at 13:04:16
 
A sad loss. I remember him as a very caring kind person and will be sadly missed. RIP.

Alec Hunt
  
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John H Hyde
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #11 - 08.08.2007 at 15:56:20
 
I too was very sad to read of the death of an old colleague, Bill Todd.  We worked together many times, but most closely at Patrington in the late 60's.  His death does also bear an important message for prostate cancer sufferers - get an early diagnosis and action by the medics.  I survived, Bill, bless him, did not.  Many memories and a sad loss.  Concolences to Christeen and the children.
John H
  
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Stuart McCullouch
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #12 - 08.08.2007 at 18:43:19
 
Bill was one of my favourite people.  We first met when he was working on "Fire Brigade" at Patrington in 1966 and we crossed paths regularly.  We had a great time at Boulmer where he was OC Ops and I was OC Admin until I took over from him.  He was a great example to us all - a man of unquestionable integrity and an impish sense of humour.  I only remember this letting him down once - when he was caught fishing without a licence on the Coquet in Northumberland!  He, unlike the rest of us, couldn't see the funny side of that. 

Sincere condolences to Christine.
  
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Sue Gillott
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #13 - 08.08.2007 at 18:53:58
 
Much later than the display controllers, I was one of Wg Cdr Todd's troublesome IDRO's when he was OC Ops at Buchan.  He was such a fair man, kind and friendly too.  Condolences to his family and friends.

Sue
  
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Dave Lowry
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #14 - 08.08.2007 at 20:27:23
 
I never worked directly for Bill but our paths, I am glad to say, intersected many times. He was always the gentleman with a great sense of humour and much wordly wisdom. I remember him particualrly when I was Chief Controller and then Master at Buchan when he was OC Benbecula. His 'sort' make the world a better place; he will be missed by many.

Dave Lowry
  
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Alistair Todd
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Re: Death of Wg Cdr Bill Todd
Reply #15 - 19.08.2007 at 22:55:11
 
Many thanks for the very kind comments posted about my father as they have been of great support to my mother, sister and me.
Although close to my father, I was not aware of how he was seen at work. When he did speak about the RAF it was with pride and with great satisfaction for such a rewarding career where undoubtedly the many people he met made a big impact on him.

Following my father's wishes I gave a eulogy, an abridged version of which is below.

Alistair Todd



My father was born 17 miles from here in 1929 and was brought up in his early years on Chapelhill farm outside Alyth where his family were tenant farmers.

He attended Alyth public school before joining the RAF in late 1946 where he trained as a radar operator and although too young for wartime service he took an active part in the Berlin Airlift in 1948/ 49.
From there he returned to the UK and in the next few years was posted to a variety of places, he gained promotion and in 1955 married my mother.

Having grown up as a services child I can testify to the fact that services life is not always the most settled of existences with house moves almost every year and numerous school changes for Judith and myself. Despite this my mother quickly adapted to the vagaries of service life and indeed supported Dad tremendously through their many years of marriage until his retirement in 1989.

Dad served in many interesting places both in the UK and abroad and he found his professional life both enjoyable and rewarding. He was a fighter controller for 42 years with the majority of his postings at coastal Radar units in places such as, Lincolnshire, Yorkshire, Aberdeenshire and Benbecula where his role was to help to defend Britain from the then real danger of an aggressive USSR. He saw duty in Cyprus, Northern Iran, Germany and closer to home, London and Worcestershire.

As with all service families we had to cope with constant moving, very significant hardship including boarding school for Judith and in my mothers case a great determination to make things work as 28 houses were occupied during their many moves.

Much of Dads work was classified and whilst he never saw active service he did serve the country during the extremely tense Cuban missile crisis in 1962 and was on the Nato front line in Cyprus during the Arab Israeli war in 1973. When in the UK I can remember many Christmas days accompanying Dad 100ft underground to visit his staff in the radar control bunker where there was always plenty of activity as RAF fighters from Leuchars were scrambled to intercept Russian bombers flying 100 miles or more to the east of Dundee

He joined the services in the lowest ranking position, was commissioned in 1961 and despite his background, lack of a university degree and a failure to complete a number of key staffing courses normally considered essential for career progression he retired at the rank of Wing Commander. This no doubt reflecting his tremendous leadership qualities and commitment to serving the Country which he did so admirably

That said itís also fair to say he didnít suffer fools gladly and whilst I know he gave tremendous support and assistance to so many young officers careers he still managed to upset some people. Funnily enough Iím sure many of you will recognise this side to Dads character, which in my case surfaced in my early career as he regularly tried to tell me what to do with my life in no uncertain terms!

Dad never forgot his roots and throughout my childhood we spent many happy holidays in Alyth. From a young age I remember going fishing and shooting, he showed me how to guddle trout, catch rabbits and Pheasants and he even introduced me into the fine art of finding lost golf balls on Alyth golf course! Fishing united both of us into my adulthood and although we did have our occasional differences we spent many happy days on river or Loch where the only disagreement would be over the choice of fishing fly or when to give up and leave for the day. Days spent with dad exploring hidden riverbanks and the wider countryside captured my imagination for which I am so grateful as this in turn has given me a lifetime of outdoor interests and memories

After retiring Dad developed a keen interest in commercial matters and as well as many discussions with my brother in law about how his business was performing, he regularly drummed up potential new customers for my employer. This interest extended to seeking out bargains and Dad was an expert at spotting these, whether in the papers or in the local shops. With this in mind, probably the most appreciated present I ever gave him came from Ebay where having picked up a series of 6 fishing videos for 1p, I deliberately left the invoice in the box for him to find on Christmas day much to his amusement and great satisfaction

He joined the Ericht Investors Group where his advice and hot tips I believe were always well debated Ė how many of you have been told to buy Wiseman shares I wonder?

The Blairgowrie Probus group gave Dad a great deal of enjoyment and through their regular meetings, their excursions and on fishing outings Dad met some wonderful friends whose support and help during his illness he particularly appreciated

Dad could be difficult on occasions but he had a real interest in everything and everyone around him, he supported my mother in many ways and was very proud of Judith and I and our families

He will be greatly missed
  
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