In 1948, as the British Mandate for Palestine came to an end, a party of RAF personnel lowered the ensign that had flown over their airfield for the last time. It was thin and tattered, the legacy of flying for years in the desert. No one seemed to want it so a young airman folded it up and put it in his kitbag.
He continued to fly, all over the world moving aircraft around as part of the Ferry Squadron. He had many stories of his travels, from the cockpit seal of his aircraft failing as he was flying over the Himalayas, to surprising an American submarine surfacing off Gibraltar.
After he left the RAF he continued to fly, as a civilian pilot with the Fleet Air Arm.
All that time, the ensign was kept carefully wrapped up, as it had one last job to do.
John Isaac Thompson
3rd April 1928 – 17th December 2021