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Group Captain Billy Drake (1917-2011)

Billy DrakeDistinguished RAF pilot, Algarve bar owner and for 20 years a Portugal resident was born 20th December 1917 and died 28th August 2011, aged 93.

Group Captain Billy Drake DSO, DFC & Bar was an ace British pilot with the Royal Air Force during World War II, scoring 20 enemy aircraft confirmed destroyed, six probables and nine damaged. Drake was a skilled operator of Supermarine Spitfires, Hawker Hurricanes and Tomahawks/Kittyhawks (Curtiss P-40s) and saw action from airfields in France, England, West Africa, North Africa and Malta.

Miguel Portas, MEP and founder of the Left Bloc

Miguel PortasMEP and founder of the Left Bloc, Miguel Portas, died on Tuesday April 24th in 2013 Antwerp, the victim of prolonged illness.

In 2010, he was diagnosed with a malignant tumor in the right lung, while undergoing a routine medical examination in Brussels, where he worked.

Miguel Portas was the first elected deputy of the Left Bloc to the European Parliament, where he had worked for the past eight years, but his career was notable for his writing and journalism.

Lyndon James Merner (1956 - 2012)

Lyndon James Merner (1956 - 2012)It is with the greatest of sadness that we have to convey to you that Lyndon passed away last weekend (July 2012). Lyndon died very suddenly from a heart attack sometime over the weekend at home, where he lived alone.

The first that we were aware of this was when Lyndon didn’t arrive for work on Monday morning and, not responding to our calls (which was most unusual for Lyndon) we went to his home.

Big Jim Sullivan (1941 - 2012)

Big Jim Sullivan, Photograph: Rob Monk/Future Publishing/RexThe sound of British pop music in the 1960s was largely the creation of unsung recording-session musicians who accompanied the solo singers of the era and were frequently enlisted to improve the efforts of well-known pop groups.

The principal guitarists of this elite team were Jimmy Page (later of Led Zeppelin) and Big Jim Sullivan, who has died aged 71 of complications from heart disease and diabetes. Sullivan played on more than 50 British No 1 hits and toured and appeared on television with Tom Jones in the early 1970s.

Clive Dunn (1920 - 2012)

Clive DunnClive Dunn, best known for his role as Lance Corporal "Jonesy" Jones in Dad's Army, has died from complications following an operation.

The late Clive DunnDunn - whose famous catchphrases included "Don't panic, don't panic" and "They don't like it up 'em" - became a recording star in 1971 when his record, Grandad, reached number one.

Oonagh Swift (1929 - 2012)

Oonagh SwiftOonagh Swift, who has died in the Algarve at the age of 83, was a cultured, charismatic and quintessentially Irish figure beloved by people of many nationalities.While her life in Ireland, London and Portugal was steeped in the arts and literature, many will remember her for her beauty and her mischievous smile.

A young OonaghBorn in Dublin, she was the third youngest of eight children of Séamus Ryan and Agnes Ryan, née Harding, from County Tipperary. They christened her Agnes Mary, but Oonagh, a Gaelic variation of Agnes, is the name that caught on from an early age.

Mary Cornelius-Reid AM MBE

Mrs Mary Cornelius-Reid AM MBEA Memorial Service for Mrs Mary Cornelius-Reid AM MBE will take place on Saturday 22nd March at 11.30am at St. Luke's Church, Palhagueira Village near Santa Barbara de Nexe.

Mrs Reid was the founder of Palhagueira Village and St. Luke's Church was built in memory of her husband John.

More info on Mrs Reid and her life's work can be seen HERE.



On the death of José Pearce de Azevedo

José Pearce de Azevedo with Jill Gallard, British AmbassadorJosé Pearce de Azevedo, former British Honorary Consul in the Algarve, Portugal died on 20 January at the age of 83.  The British Ambassador, Jill Gallard, has said:   "I am deeply saddened by José Azevedo’s death.  He was a dear and loyal friend of the UK and he will be warmly remembered by me and by many of his former colleagues at the British Consulates in Portimão and Lisbon, and at the Embassy. "