Hartlepool sailor and ambulance crew member remembered through RNLI Launch a Memory Campaign
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The lifeboat charity’s Launch a Memory campaign is an opportunity for people to add a name to the letters and numbers on the side of a lifeboat in remembrance of a loved one, or to celebrate someone special.
To mark the 20th anniversary of his dad’s death, and what would have been his 100th birthday, Dennis Lendrem, born and raised in Hartlepool, had the name of his father, also called Dennis Lendrem, and his dad’s friends Jack and Jock, added onto an RNLI lifeboat.
The late Dennis met his friends John 'Jack' Jackson and Peter 'Jock' Dawes during his time serving in the Royal Navy at the age of 18 but this friendship was short-lived.
In 1942, Dennis survived a torpedo attack that his friends did not.
Son Dennis said: “His friendship with Jack and Jock...he never forgot about it. He would remember it each remembrance day.
"He made sure that all of the family knew about the story, right up until his death.”
Dennis said: “This year was a special year because it was my dad’s 100th birthday coming up. The family wanted to do something special and out of the blue we saw the RNLI appeal to launch a lifeboat.
"It just seemed like the perfect opportunity to celebrate his life.”
Dennis continued: “Having done that, we thought again about the story of his two friends Jock and Jack and it seemed that it was appropriate that we celebrate their lives too, and we were conscious that he wanted to be back at sea again with his two friends.
"It just seemed like such a good opportunity to celebrate their lives as well.”
Dennis had his ashes scattered by RNLI Hartlepool after his death in 2003 after having a long association with the charity.
For 23 years, he served in the ambulance service and he was involved in many sea rescues.
Dennis said: “My dad would be completely over the moon to learn that the three of them were reunited, that they were riding the waves once again and that they were doing something useful in the process.”
For more information or to take part in the RNLI’s Launch a Memory campaign, see https://rnli.org/support-us/give-money/donate-in-memory/launch-a-memory.