War memorial honours US servicemen who served at Eye Airfield during Second World War
- Credit: Gregg Brown
It has taken two years of hard work from a devoted group of local people to have a war memorial built at Eye Airfield.
But under glorious sunshine and blue skies the memorial to honour the US servicemen who served in the 490th Bomb Group during the Second World War, was dedicated.
Watched by hundreds of people, the service was also attended by 92-year-old veteran Si Spiegle and relatives of some of the many thousands of men who called Eye Airfield home.
Jackie Aling, a member of the 490th Bomb Group Memorial Project who organised the memorial, said: 'As you can imagine we are just very pleased. It has been such an honour to have the families come all this way. And we are just so surprised by the amount of people who have turned out.'
A poignant moment saw current US servicemen from RAF Lakenheath and Mildenhall, adorning 1940s military uniforms and walking towards the monument as the cloth was pulled away to reveal it.
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And as the service paused for a two minute reflection a Taylorcraft Auster flew overhead and dropped hundreds of poppies on the crowd.
The skies around north Suffolk were once used to the roars of the Flying Fortress. And once more the sound of the B-17, along with two P-15 Mustangs, echoed above Eye as a special fly past took place.
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Mr Spiegle, from New York, flew 35 missions. He said the memorial service was overwhelming.
'It was just fantastic and beyond my wildest imagination,' he said. 'When I first heard a monument was going to be out here I just knew I had to come. From everyone, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.'
The monument can be found on Progress Way near the Mid Suffolk Business Park.
For more information about the 490th Bomb Group visit http://www.490th.co.uk/