JUST ORDINARY MEN. HQ Troop, 1st Airborne Reconnaissance Squadron, 1st British Airborne Division (WW2) - HQ Trp. 1st Airborne Reconnaissance Sqn
' Just Ordinary Men '
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Honorary Members


The Old Para

Sir! may i take time to speak?

Of God's son who died to make you free!

To forgive our sin's, because we are weak.

He died for you and me!

Let me tell you son, of some men, from gliders and planes they fell.

Into Holland, they jumped into Arnhem.  Against an enemy that turned into hell.

So many young men knocked on God's door.  So long, long before their time.

So you can have your freedom son.

To come and knock on mine!

Copyright 2008.  Simon Todd.

What greater words of thanks can we give to the men who gave us our today!

On this page you will find the names of the veterans with whom we have extended an invitation to become honorary and life members of Just Ordinary Men.   With their permission, you will be able to have a 'snap shot' into their life and be able to share in their experiences.  Sometimes the memories are too raw and they will, respectfully, not be published.  To protect their service records; only the last four digits of their service numbers have been published.

Where possible.  The certificate's of Honorary and Life Membership are formally presented at a Mess function when the members are officially dined into the Troop.  Where this is not possible a chalice will be filled and placed on the table of absent friends.

This is THEIR page ... and is entirely dedicated to THEM!

A note from Pip Tyler;




4125 Peter Adams

9th Parachute Battalion


Peter saw action with the 9th Battalion at Merville Battery, Arnhem, Bastogne, Malaya and Cyprus.

Seen here, with his hand on the flask, in a C-47 on the way to the Drop Zone

Peter before he passed away in 2010


8872 Sjt. Fred Ashton

2nd Ox & Bucks Battalion


Fred was called up in 1940.  He served in the Reconnaissance Platoon of 2nd Ox & Bucks which formed part of 6th Airborne Division entering action via gliders.

Whilst with the battalion he also received operational postings to Brigade HQ, Defence Platoon and Tactical HQ.

He saw action in Normandy on D-Day, the Ardennes and the Rhine Crossing before being demobbed in 1947.


Fred Today.


0401 Ron Bristow

7th Parachute Battalion


Ron joined the army at the age of 16 and by 17 and a half, he was landing in the field next to Pegasus Bridge, Normandy alongside the actor Richard Todd.

During the opening phase of the initial battle.  Ron and his comrades spotted the first German armour coming across the bridge.  Lying on the ground was a PIAT but know one knew how to use it.  Ron, had an idea how to operate it and  without hesitation he loaded and fired.  The initial round missed as the recoil sent him flying backwards.  Realising the gravity of the situation.  He immediately re-loaded.  With the help of one of his comrades holding him forward; he fired again.  This time the round hit home.  Disabling the tank.

Un-known to Ron and his comrades.  Behind the initial tank were a further two tanks.  The result of Ron's action's forced the other tanks to retire.  It is thought due to the enemy believing they being fired upon by a six pounder.

Without doubt.  Ron's action's successfully delayed the German counter attack and prevented enemy armour from successfully taking the bridge.  The result of which would have been devastating to the British troops occupying it at that time.

In 2006.  Ron's service details, items of uniform, documents and photographs were found by one of his son's in a box and the back of his father's loft.  Ron's family knew he had served in the war but had never known what he did as he never spoke about it.   When asked about the contents of the box.  Ron, for the very first time, told his family that he had been a paratrooper and had fought at Pegasus Bridge.  For the first time in 64 years he felt able to tell the full story of what he had experienced.





Regimental Honorary Colonel Lowdon

Kevin was the founding member of Just Ordinary Men and due to ill health has handed over the running of the group to Lieutenant Pope. Kevin will still provide the group with assistance particularly with his vast serving knowledge. 

Kevin joined Her Majesty's forces as a boy soldier back in 1966. He served in many arenas and conflicts until his retirement in 1998.

Full Dress Blues of 12th Battalion Parachute Regiment




Corporal Chris Howard

Chris was a member of JOM for many years and was the creator of this website. He had a wealth of experience which he brought from the armed services into JOM and other projects he was involved in.

He has been missed by the WW2 Living History groups.

Chris passed away 2011.

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