Rededication service for Second Lieutenant Henry George Pike RAF - Zillebeke - 29/06/2022
On Wednesday 29 June 2022 a rededication service took place for Second Lieutenant Henry George Pike RAF. Until now he was buried as an unknown soldier, but through recent research it became clear that he was buried at Larch Wood cemetery in Zillebeke. On this cemetery more than 850 soldiers have their final resting place. 

The access to the cemetery whioch is situated alongside the railway.

Henry George Pikewas born on the 29 May 1895 in East Battersea, Wandsworth to Henry George and Louisa, his father was a carpenter. After school Henry was employed as a motor mechanic for 3 years until April 1916 when he enlisted into the Seaforth Higlanders, an infantry regiment of the British Army. During his time in the infantry, he became a Lewis Gun instructor indicating he was an experienced soldier in a frontline position. He was awarded the British War and Victory medals during his infantry service and his overseas service would have entitled him to wear an overseas blue chevron.

In 1917 he applied for a commission in The Royal Flying Corps, described on his record of service as being 5ft 9 and having perfect vision, his appointment as a 2nd Lieutenant was published in the London Gazette in August 1918 into the newly formed RAF.

1604075 2nd Lt Pike was deployed with the 65 Sqn. He was flying Sopwith Camel D9482 when, on 30 August he didn't return to the aerodrome,and was presumed missing. No 65 squadron was based at Bray Dyunes and flew escort missions for DH9 aircraft who were operating agaianst targets at Bruges, Ostand and Zeebrugge.

The service was conducted by Reverend (Captain Leader) Adrian Klos RAF.

Reading 'To Any Mother' by Clive Montellier OBE Hd JCCC & MOD Medal Office

Scripture reading by Major Mark Venturino US Air Force Exchange Officer XI(F) Squadron, RAF

The Exhortation by Sergeant Jack Ruder XI(F) Sqn RAF

The Last Post played by SAC Jack Wilson, Trumpter of the Central Band of the Royal Air Force.

The Reveille

The Kohima Epitaph by Corporal Michael Langlands XI(F) Sqn RAF

And then wreaths were laid. First by Group Captain John Dickson, Defence Attaché to Belgium and Luxembourg.

A great-great niece of Henry George Pike attended the service and laid a wreath.

Philippe De Cock, military commander of the Province of West Flanders

Geert Bekaert on behalf of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

The Union Jack was presented to the family member of Henry George Pike.

The blessing ended the service.

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