Interview with Eddy Smythe. Two



Interview with Eddy Smythe. Two


Eddy Smythe reminisces about his father, John Henry Smythe, who was from Sierra Leone and served in Bomber Command during the Second World War. John flew as a navigator until his aircraft was shot down in November 1943. He became a prisoner of war in Stalag Luft 1 until 1945. After his release John went to London and trained as a barrister. Upon completion of his professional training, he returned to Freetown, Sierra Leone and set up a legal practice. He rose to be Sierra Leone’s Attorney General. One evening, he met the German Ambassador at a reception. They realised they were aircrew on opposing sides, and the Ambassador shot down an aircraft on the same date and time and in the same location that John’s aircraft had been shot down. This prompted the two men to hug each other and to note that the conditions of war meant that such aggressive acts were not personal. Eddy adds final remarks on the value of remembrance and reconciliation.

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00:04:04 video recording






Heather Hughes, “Interview with Eddy Smythe. Two,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed October 26, 2020,

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