Joe's had a varied and active life - from being an ambulance man in Cumbria to a member of the SBS and SOE during WWII.
Here Joe, now 86, reads out a sermon he wrote on the poppy and its meaning in remembrance.
Note: the film contains images of the Holocaust that some might find disturbing.
After his basic navy training at HMS Ganges near Ipswich, Joe went into the Special Services and then on to the Special Boat Service (SBS) where he trained in X-Craft, as a frogman and as a Commando at Achnacarry in Scotland.
Among his many missions into occupied Europe, he was tasked with neutralising a scientist working on the V1 rockets and later rescuing a Jewish scientist from a concentration camp in the Netherlands. This scientist was none other than Robert Oppenheimer, whose work led to the first atomic bomb.
Joe at the Cenotaph in Carlisle's Ricker
From the SBS, Joe was seconded to the Special Operation Executive (SOE) at Beaulieu, where he trained and serviced operatives in the skills of explosives, communications and silent killing. Here he worked with the creator of the James Bond Stories, Ian Flemming. Joe was one of the original “00” agents. He was 005, code name Piranha.
In 1945 Joe was back in Amsterdam, but this time the Gestapo captured him, interrogated him and sent him to the Amersfoort concentration camp, where he was made to take part in one of the last “death marches”.
last updated: 27/10/2008 at 09:06