Speech by David Geddes on 25 May 2013 at the Memorial stone to 7 airmen of LAN R5679  På dansk Updated:  14 JUN 2013
  See Lancaster R5679 Memorial Unveiling, a webalbum by David Geddes with many photos.

Sir Thomas Campbell, a Scottish poet,  who helped start the University of London, and was Rector of Glasgow University from 1826-9, and was buried in
Poets Corner in Westminster Cathedral, wrote these lines into his poems in about 1799.

“To live in hearts we leave behind, is not to die.” 
“the soul of conversation is sympathy” 
“Truth ever lovely since the world began, is the foe of tyrants, and the friend of man.”

The conversation we are having today by being here, concerns remembrance, truth and sympathy.

It is important that we remember, the unjust and dreadful things that start a conflict, and the sacrifices made so that good can and does prevail.  

Truth is hard to find if we do not communicate well. The pain in my household over the loss of Sgt Pilot Lewis Morrison, was so great, that the events of 1942 could
not be discussed at all, until after my mother had died in 2007.  

If Gudrun Laigaard had not spoken to the reporter from the Viborg Stifts Folkeblad in 2009, I would never have been able to unravel the complex story that brings us
all here, at last,  with clarity and truth and an acceptance of what happened 71 years ago. 

And if we do not communicate with our children and grandchildren, then how can we ever expect them to have the sympathy for the truth that brings us together
here today? I am particularly pleased to meet Laura and Sophie, and Max and Rex,  of a very different generation to myself, who will remember this occasion perhaps
for all their lives.

When we all engaged with finding the truth about this mission, its crew, its training, and their families who meet today for the first time, we found a sympathy for
these seven brave, highly trained young men who died on their first mission together. Their mission to drop parachute mines east of Kiel was successful, but they
did not manage to return safely,  being detected by the radar at Randers and the Karup Grove nightfighters then being directed to intercept the Lancaster.

But this story would not have become known, but for the persistence of the dedicated Danish air-war researchers, the journalists who have run the story, and
incredibly, the eye witnesses who have come forward. The sympathy amongst the Danish people, for remembrance of this crew has been exceptionally impressive. 
It is understandable that for a people whose land was occupied and who suffered, that remembrance here also remains strong.

So I wish on behalf of all the families of the crew, those here, those unable to be here - some in Canada, and those descendants who do not yet even know of this
event,  I wish to thank everyone who has been involved in this lovely compassionate project, those who have given time, skills, and donations – and those who have
come here today,  the families who have travelled from  Britain,  our distinguished guests and dignitaries, our Danish and UK  military colleagues, the piper and the trumpeter, but -  most particularly  - Anders, Knud, Gregers, and Gerhardt of the Lancaster group  who have with their friends made this happen.

“To live in hearts we leave behind, is not to die.” 
“the soul of conversation is sympathy” 
“Truth ever lovely since the world began, is the foe of tyrants, and the friend of man.”

This is a proud and pleasing moment, that I for one, shall remember amongst the best moments of my life.

“We will remember them . . . “