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Phil Cockburn

Discussion in 'WWII Obituaries' started by GRW, Apr 17, 2020.

  1. GRW

    GRW Pillboxologist WW2|ORG Editor

    Oct 26, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Stirling, Scotland
    "LONDON, ONT -- The Forest CIty's last living connection to the armoured regiments of D-Day has passed away.
    Phil Cockburn was just a few months short of his 98th birthday.
    Born July 26, 1922, he was on the beach at Juno as Canadians fought on D-Day, June 6, 1944.
    He was a gunner for the London based First Hussars.
    CTV News reporter Sean Irvine interviewed him extensively for two separate special features in 2004 and 2019.
    In 2004, Phil revealed how fearful he was that his D-Day floating tank would not even make it to shore. Several other tanks sank in the rough seas around him.
    Yet, the worst was still to come. Landing at the “Mike Red” section of Juno he was quickly in heavy action, and stunned by the scene around him.
    “You wondered, is it real?”Still his tank crew fired one of the first decisive shots of armour that morning, taking out a German position in a church tower.
    “It was pretty rough, pretty scary,” he told Irvine in 2019.
    Phil witnessed first hand the loss of life on D-Day, and expressed the mental and physical pain he still feels in both interviews.
    When speaking of the friends he lost, he stated the bond he shares with them will never be forgotten, “They are like brothers. June 6 [is] a date I will never, ever forget.”
    Phil died peacefully Thursday, his son Ray Cockburn tells CTV News."
    London's last armoured soldier to survive D-Day passes away
    Kai-Petri likes this.

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