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School to honour Battle of Britain hero

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BBC Wales History BBC Wales History | 13:34 UK time, Thursday, 15 September 2011

The heroism of Welsh pilot Sgt Lewis Reginald Isaac who was killed in action during the Battle of Britain will be commemorated at a reunion of former school pupils of Llanelli Boys Grammar School in October.

The Llanelli born fighter pilot was just 24 when he was killed in an attack by German fighters on 5 August 1940.

The reunion of old boys from his former school will remember the bravery of Sgt Isaac. A commemorative plaque will be unveiled by Clive Millman from the Battle of Britain Historical Society.

In an article in the Western Mail, Mr Millman said:

"The Battle of Britain Historical Society places memorial plaques in honour of the brave men who fought so successfully in the battle, at the schools where they were educated,

"We, and future generations, will always have a huge debt of gratitude for Lewis Reginald Isaac and his brave colleagues."

Sgt Isaac's six Spitfire squadron became engaged in a dogfight with enemy planes in the Folksetone area. Sgt Lewis' plane was seen to crash into the sea and his body was never found.

When the remaining pilots returned to base it became clear during the debriefing that Sgt Isaac had turned to face enemy fighters in an effort to try and protect the other planes from his squadron that had suffered damage in the dogfight.

Next month's black-tie event is taking place on Friday 21 October at the Graig campus, in what was previously the assembly hall of the old school. Tickets for the event need to be booked in advance. More information available at llanelliboysgrammar.org

Today marks Battle of Britain Day. Many historian consider 15 September 1940 to be the turning point in the Battle of Britain when the Royal Air Force, flying new Spitfires, downed 56 German aircraft in two dogfights lasting less than an hour.

Although fighting continued in the air for several more weeks, and British cities were sporadically bombed for the rest of the war, German efforts to achieve air superiority ahead of an invasion had failed.

Find out more about Battle of Britain Day on BBC History.

Read James Roberts' article Battle of Britain comes to Wales on the Wales History blog.


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