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Obituary For World War Two Veteran Shows How You Live Your Life To The Fullest

Obituary For World War Two Veteran Shows How You Live Your Life To The Fullest

He studied at Oxford, stormed Normandy Beach on D-Day, worked with the UN and threw outrageous parties - what a LAD

Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie

When you've been binge watching Netflix for a few days or even a few hours, some people might pause and question whether there could be other things in their life that they could do. Learning an instrument or language, helping the needy or volunteering for a local community project might be ideas that spring to mind.

But it's sometimes hard to find the motivation to undertake those extra-curricular activities. There's not enough hours in the day or days in your life to get everything done and feel like you've reached your potential.

Well, if you're struggling to find that inspiration, have a read of this bloke's obituary, which shows how much you can fit in a lifetime.

Cecil Herbert William (Bill) Hodges seemed like he fit a lot in in his 95 years on this planet. He appeared to be a gifted student, claiming the Speech Prize and the Kenneth Freeman Prize before getting a scholarship to Oriel College at Oxford University.

Shortly after getting into one of, if not the most prestigious schools in the UK, he was commissioned into the Royal Artillery in 1942 for World War Two. Bill landed on Normandy for the notorious D-Day and also fought in Holland and Germany.

Not only that, but he was reportedly one of the first soldiers to enter the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, where roughly 60,000 prisoners were found inside starving and seriously ill.

Bergen-Belsen concentration camp
Bergen-Belsen concentration camp

Crowd watches the burning of Bergen-Belsen camp. Credit: War Office Second World War Official Collection

He documented what he saw and sent them home, but they were so articulate and eloquent and described the full horrors of what he witnessed, that those notes are now held in the Imperial War Museum.

You'd think after all that, most people would have returned home and relaxed into a chilled job.

But not Bill.

He worked in the Treasury just two years after the end of World War Two before becoming the Treasury Advisor to the UK Mission to the UN in New York. Then he joined the Department of Economic Affairs before getting into the Cabinet Office between 1972-74.

Mr Hodges eventually retired to the Costwolds, which is a horrifically beautiful part of the Enlish countryside, with his long-time partner Bernard Finn. They apparently threw parties of epic proportions which were 'renowned' in the area.


Credit: Creative Commons

Bill and Bernard eventually got a civil partnership in 2005.

When his health declined, he was moved to London and eventually ended up leaving his school a decent sum of cash in his will.

He also waited until his mum died at the tender age of 101 to officially change his name to Bill, because that's what he always wanted to be known as.

It's a pretty awesome record of how much you can do in your time on this earth.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Awesome, Daily Ladness, Interesting, Community, UK, soldier