Here’s the latest in a series by Mark Stevenson looking at some of the real-life incidents behind the names on West Leeds war memorials, as we lead into the 75th anniversary of VE Day. Today we re-visit Rodley War Memorial …
Germans were surrendering all over Europe in 1945 as most knew that the war was lost.
The captain of the U-534 seemed to think otherwise as he could have had, if he so wished, raised a white flag or given a signal to the Liberator GR VIII, KK299 circling above.
Instead he chose to open fire and a KK299 dropped a bomb which detonated close to the U-534.
On its second attack the KK299 was shot down by the U-534 (U-534 was sunk by other Liberators). The crew of 11 all died with only one body surviving which was found a week later.
Pilot Officer Harold Parks, whose name is on the Rodley War Memorial in Rodley Park, was one of the crew and one of the ten whose body was never found.
He died on the 5th May 1945, just three days before VE Day.