Tribute to Sheffield World War Two airman

Group Captain Stan Slater
Group Captain Stan Slater
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The funeral of a Sheffield military hero who played a key role in Bomber Command during World War II has taken place following his death at the age of 92.

Group Captain Stanley Slater, who grew up in Ridgeway, joined the RAF during the Second World War and became a Lancaster bomber pilot, playing a major part in the activities of Bomber Command.

He took part in numerous sorties against targets in both Germany and Italy, being awarded both the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Distinguished Service Order.

The citation for the DSO, given to him when he was Acting Squadron Leader, said: “This officer has participated in very many sorties including attacks on such targets as Berlin, Frankfurt, Stuttgart and Kiel.

“He has continued to display the highest standard of skill and bravery, and has set a fine example to all.

“He has commanded his flight with much success, and his untiring efforts, strong sense of discipline and fine fighting qualities have contributed in good measure to the operational efficiency of the formation.”

Towards the end of the war, Group Captain Slater’s plane was shot down over Denmark and he was hidden by a Danish farmer in his attic - in the same house where two German officers were also staying.

Members of the Danish resistance managed to smuggle him back to the UK, via Sweden, within three weeks.

At the end of the war, he was offered a permanent commission in the RAF and went on to serve for another 30 years.

While holding the rank of wing commander, Group Captain Slater was awarded an OBE and retired with the rank of Group Captain.

In 2012, at the age of 90, Group Captain Slater attended a ceremony in Green Park, London, where a Bomber Command memorial was unveiled by the Queen.

He had his hand shaken by Prince Charles at the ceremony for the memorial, which was installed after years of campaigning by the Bomber Command Association.

The funeral service yesterday took place in Leatherhead, Surrey, after Group Captain Slater - who lived down south in his later years - passed away on August 29.

Collections were taken at the funeral for the RAF Benevolent Fund.