Locals encouraged to pay respects to former RAF aircraft engineer

William James Boles, pictured front row, first on the right, with RAF colleagues.

William James Boles, pictured front row, first on the right, with RAF colleagues. - Credit: Archant

The RAF Association is calling on people in St Ives to attend the funeral of a former aircraft engineer, who could be buried without any mourners.

William James Boles, 61, died at his home in the town after battling cancer, but he has no known friends or family.

Little is known about the corporal, but he joined RAF Cosford, in the West Midlands, as an apprentice in 1972 before serving as an aircraft engineer for 11 years and retiring in 1981.

Rory O’Connor, director of welfare at the RAF Association, said: “We would like to encourage as many people as possible to join our members and attend William’s funeral this Wednesday.

“Sadly, William’s story is not unique and there are too many cases where ex-RAF personnel pass away with no known family or friends. The RAF Association runs a befriending service, pairing volunteers with veterans who suffer from loneliness and isolation. We want to remember the service and sacrifice of every veteran and hope to give William the honour he deserves.”


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The funeral will take place on July 13 at Cambridge Crematorium, starting at 3.15pm.

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