Leslie Leonard Carvell 1916 - 2009

Leslie Leonard Carvell 1916 - 2009 (Rollestonian Article)

As the Winter 2009 issue of Rollestonian goes to press we hear of the passing of probably Rolleston’s oldest male resident. Appropriately, given his history, he had an Armistice Day funeral.

‘Les’, who was known to many of the village as the chap who stood tall and straight on Remembrance Sunday, was a local lad from one of the smallholdings on Tutbury Road. He was a survivor of the Japanese Prisoner of War camps having been caught up in the surrender of Singapore on 15th February 1942 and working on starvation rations for three years building the Burma-Siam Death Railway until VJ Day in 1945. Les rarely spoke of those days or his war service in the Royal Artillery as a Bombardier until the recent 60th Anniversary of the end of WW II which we celebrated in the village. Even then memories and recollections were painful. His greatest love and the one who taught him to live again after the war was his wife Violet or ‘Chick’ who died in 2002 after he nursed her for three years. He brought to this village a quiet life that hid the enormous cost of that war and yet he would stand with us in November and say with us ‘We Will Remember Them’.

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Last updated: 28 December 2009