POUNDER – Lyndon A.

605561 – L.A. Pounder – Trinidad – attested 7.4.43 – Sgt. Pilot UK 30.3.44

[Source: NA AIR 2/6876]

The following story and photo’s are provided by Mark Johnson (author of Caribbean Volunteers at War), following an interview with David Pounder in 2013.

Navigator Lyndon Pounder, from Trinidad, flew in Lancasters with 149 Sqn RAF Bomber Command. Between 01 and 07 May, 1945, he participated in ‘Operation Manna’, which dropped thousands of tons of food supplies to the starving Dutch population from heights as low as 150 feet. He referred to these as ‘Spam drops’ over Holland, and he later described his experiences to his son David:

“On Tuesday May 1st1945, my aircraft, Lancaster HK 654 of No. 149 Squadron, RAF, took off from Methwold, carrying our crew and 6,404 pounds of food supplies on an errand of mercy, our destination, a field in The Hague. Once over the dropzone, Flying Officer Story flew as low as practicable and the crew  hurled the food packages out of the bomb bay doors. On this flight I was the navigator, and Iclearly remember seeing a young man speeding across the field on his bicycle, grabbing a package and waving at me as he pedalled off.

“In the early 1950s, I attended a teacher’s conference near London, when to my utter surprise a Dutchman came up to me and insisted we had met before. Once I had composed myself and trawled my memory, the episode of five years earlier began to slowly return to me. It then emerged that this Dutchman,by the name of Rudi Marcus, had been the young man on the bicycle who had snaffled theparcel from the food drop, and he clearly remembered me smiling and waving at him. I suppose the picture of a West Indian airman waving from the bomb bay doors of a RAF Lancaster must have impressed itself on the memory of the young Rudi Marcus. Just as extraordinary perhaps, is the fact that we should later end up teaching in the same school and remain friends for the rest of our lives.”

Lyndon A. Pounder RAFLyndon A. Pounder

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