Staff Sergeant Laurie Weeden
Glider Pilot Regiment
While Pegasus Bridge became one of the best known operations of D-Day, a second wave of gliders also played a crucial role in the early hours of the invasion, bringing in equipment, troops and supplies.
A group of six gliders – of which Sgt Weeden piloted one – had been tasked with a critical mission. The troops they carried were to attack a series of strategically important bridges on the invasion's eastern border, blowing them up to prevent German armour and troops moving in to attack British troops landing by air and sea.
Although guided in to the wrong landing zone, Sgt Weeden managed to get the glider down safely and the bridges were blown. Just three days after landing in Normandy, Sgt Weeden was shipped back to the UK where he soon began training for the glider landings at Arnhem.
After the war Laurie Weeden went on to become a chartered accountant. He continued to seek excitement on the water where he was a keen yachtsman.