Page last updated at 15:24 GMT, Sunday, 14 February 2010

Memorial to Channel Dash airmen unveiled in Kent

The granite memorial in honour of the Channel Dash airmen
All the airmen were shot down during the operation and just five survived

A granite stone in memory of the airmen who took part in the World War II Channel Dash operation has been unveiled at Kent's Ramsgate Harbour.

It honours the heroism of 18 pilots who took off from Manston in six Swordfish torpedo bombers to try to stop three German battle cruisers in the Channel.

All were shot down on 12 February 1942, and only five of the airmen survived.

A fly past by an original Fairey Swordfish and other aircraft marked the dedication on Friday.

The monument was unveiled by Channel Dash Association (CDA) patron, Admiral the Lord Boyce.

A memorial service also took place at sea when some of the ashes of the three last surviving veterans of the operation were scattered.

Carole Lee and Graeme Samples

Graeme Samples, son of one of the airmen and Carole Lee, a widow, said it was very important to remember what they had done.

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