Sunday, August 5, 2007

British Club Honors WWII Vets with Military Vehicles

Lawson Green's beautifully-restored 1942 GMC Cargo/Tipper (Photo Courtesy of HMVF)

I received a very interesting email yesterday from Englishman Lawson Green, who had read my blog about the air show at Upottery Airfield, which is located above Honiton, Devon. The article and photos in that posting were sent to me by aviation historian John Havers.

At the Upottery Airfield, Lawson poses with his truck and the C-47. It was the first C-47 to land at the base in over sixty years. (HMVF)

Lawson mentioned that he had also been at this event. He is part of a group called the Historical Military Vehicle Forum, dedicated to, on Lawson's words, "honouring and preserving the memories of all those that where lost and indeed took part in what was such a momentous event in our history and the wider worlds. This was a time our little island became basically a floating airfield and weapons dump, full of men and tanks and trucks of every kind. These vehicles lined the streets and even could be found in peoples back gardens all waiting for D-Day."

Members of the HMVF pose for a group shot with their vehicles. (Photo courtesy HMVF)

"I have always thought that through a child's eye--and to everyones really-- to have had guys from every corner of the world walking and driving down your street and through our little lanes must been a remarkable site to behold. People knew that something big and momentous was about to take place, something everyone had waited for and wanted for so long.

I feel for everyone who took part in this event because it was a job that no one had asked for..but still a job that every man knew had to be done with a brave heart."

Some tough-looking re-enactors pose for a shot reminiscent of the weeks leading up to D-Day, 1944.

"These are the reasons for us to preserve these old honor preserve the memories of all those brave young guys..Plus what fun they are to drive... and to have the honor of owning such a historical piece of our history."

There an old saying that the only difference between men and boys is the size of their toys. And Lawson has one of the coolest toys I've seen in some time--his very own restored 1942 GMC Cargo/Tipper. It is a beauty! Here is a photo of this grand old truck. Not only is it cool, it is a piece of living history.

"We attend as many meeting as well can all afford to do and have a great time doing it and all meeting to admire one anothers vehicles...The public that attend love to see them ..There are all always lots of events going as well you no our country is full of history and events from this era.
Well these are are reasons for what we do.. and as i have said we all very much enjoy the little bit of magic we feel from driving our trucks...tanks and jeeps to these shows."

Another HMVF poses with his Jeep and vintage Air Corps flight gear. (HMVF)

The club website is


TonyH said...

what a great artical, and just nice to see and know that people have a passion to remember what ordinary people had to go through for peace and salvation throughout the world.
I cannot think of a better way of keeping the memory alive than by restoring these beutiful vehicles.

r morris said...

Thanks for your comment, Tonyh.
I find the work by this British group to be very inspiring. I hope to be able to meet some of these guys next year at Horham when I'm in England. What a great story that will be!

HMVF Jack said...

Hi guys.

Jack here, owner of and just wanted to say thank you for your kind words and the mention of our site and many thanks go to Lawson for catching up with you guys in the first place. We had great fun at the Upottery weekend as it really was something special.

You may also be interested to know that we have just launched another site called HMVF it is a 'YouTube' for military vehicles and you will see some great footage up there of the C47 taking off for the first time since WW11 - cameraman was Lawson!

Best wishes.