Who is Ralph Norbury (Hero from WWII)? Wiki, Bio, Age, Wife (Kath), Cause of Death, Career

Ralph Norbury Wiki – Bio

Ralph Norbury is idientify that the last surviving hero from Britain’s Second World War Glider Pilot Regiment who was a part of the four major operations the wooden gliders were used in has died aged 100.

Ralph Norbury Age

He was 100 years old as of 2020.

Ralph Norbury Wife

Just 10 days after escaping Arnhem, he married wife Kath, a crafts teacher, but the newlyweds were soon separated again as he returned to the heat of battle. Operation Varsity was launched on March 24, 1945, in conjunction with the Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery orchestrated Operation Plunder.

His little girl Maggie, 67, stated: ‘My dad didn’t care to discuss the war however he was a genuine saint.

‘He was caring, amenable, so insightful – a genuine refined man. It is striking to figure what he did during the war. We are generally so glad for him.’

Sgt Norbury, initially from Manchester, enrolled with the Lancashire Regiment at the start of the war before moving to the Glider Pilot Regiment.

During the war, lightweight flyers turned into an incredibly successful choice to parachute drops, conveying up to 28 fighters or jeeps, big guns and even tanks.


Sgt Norbury and his kind were prepared as master pilots and afterward on landing played out the job of an infantry official fit for driving the airborne warriors they had shipped into fight.

For this, they got known as the ‘complete warrior’.

His first activity was the attack of Sicily on July 9, 1943.

It was a sad activity as over a large portion of the lightweight flyers arrived in the ocean and numerous pilots suffocated.

On D-Day, Sgt Norbury was a piece of the sixth Airborne Division which arrived close to Ranville conveying components of the Royal Ulster Rifles.

Their activity was to ensure the left flank of the Allies landing on Sword Beach.

Sgt Norbury needed to make it back a few miles to the sea shore to get back home to Britain so he could fly over once more.

A quarter of a year later, during Operation Market Garden, Sgt Norbury was in a Horsa lightweight flyer towed by a Dakota.

The next day, the lightweight plane pilots cleared their path through the forested areas to Oosterbeek, where they stayed until withdrawing over the Rhine River on September 25.

Sgt Norbury later reviewed to a companion: ‘We remained first in the forested areas yet later in fight needed to discover new spread in the houses simply outside the forested areas.

‘The Germans were near such an extent that we could plainly be heard talking and diving in close by in the forested areas. I could see men killed and injured around me constantly.

‘On the ninth day of the activity, we were told there would be a withdrawal over the stream, with Canadian soldiers in pontoons coming to help.

‘Every one of nowadays we had no nourishment and constrained water, and we were lacking in ammo.

‘Making for the stream with different gatherings of men, I heard a clamor and there before me was a little pontoon, I got out and was pulled down into the vessel and carried to security on the opposite side of the waterway.’

Only 10 days subsequent to getting away from Arnhem, he wedded spouse Kath, a specialties educator, yet the love birds were before long isolated again as he came back to the warmth of fight.

Activity Varsity was propelled on March 24, 1945, related to the Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery coordinated Operation Plunder.

The airborne divisions, totalling 16,000, were dropped toward the east of the Rhine to ward off propelling German soldiers, empowering 200,000 men to traverse the verifiably significant German waterway boundary.

Inside about a month and a half of the effective activity, Germany had given up and the war in Europe was finished.

Deny Ponsford, of the Glider Pilot Regiment Society, stated: ‘Ralph Norbury was the remainder of a little gathering of the World War Two lightweight flyer pilots who endure all the major airborne tasks which were significant defining moments of the war.

‘Such huge numbers of suffocated during the tragic Sicily activity or were murdered when they were dwarfed at Arnhem.

‘At the point when individuals think back on D-Day the main idea is warriors raging the sea shores yet the airborne divisions assumed a urgent job in keeping the Germans under control, which they likewise did during Operation Varsity empowering the fruitful Rhine crossing.

‘It is an exceptionally powerful day and the finish of an extraordinary age whose gigantic commitment to the war exertion ought to never be overlooked.’

Trevor Williams, of the Arnhem Boys, a World War Two showcase group safeguarding the memory of the individuals who battled in Operation Market Garden, stated: ‘The lightweight plane pilots were an intense breed.

‘Prepared to fly that colossal lightweight flyer once they had got it on the ground they assumed the job of the normal attack warrior.

‘They were prepared to discharge all way of weapons, Bren firearm, Sten weapon or No.4 rifle – and would battle next to each other the very men they had traveled to the fight.

Cause of Death

Staff Sergeant Ralph Norbury flew wooden gliders deep behind enemy lines at the invasion of Sicily in July 1943.

Eleven months later on D-Day he became one of the first Allied servicemen to step foot on Nazi-occupied France after landing ahead of main invasion.

In September 1944 he fought in the Battle of Arnhem in Holland and then took part in Operation Varsity over the Rhine in western Germany in March 1945.

Such was the enormous casualty rate involved in going behind enemy lines, only six members of the Glider Pilot Regiment took part all four operations.

Sgt Norbury passed away in hospital last week.
‘There are no adequate words that can describe that sort of bravery.

‘Each and everyone that passes sees another British hero depart our company for a well earned rest.

‘Lest we forget those that fought and those that died, for theirs was the glory.’

In later life, Sgt Norbury worked in the printmaking industry in Andover, Hampshire, and London. He retired in the 1980s and spent his final decades in Tooting, south London.

Sgt Norbury, whose wife died in 1989, leaves behind three children, John, Jane and Maggie, seven grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren.

Quick Facts You Need Know

  • Staff Sergeant Ralph Norbury flew wooden gliders deep behind enemy lines .
  • In September 1944 he fought in the Battle of Arnhem in Holland and then took part in Operation Varsity over the Rhine in western Germany in March 1945.
  • Sgt Norbury passed away in hospital last week, leaving behind three children, John, Jane and Maggie, seven grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren.
  • He was among the Allied servicemen to step foot on Nazi-occupied France.

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