On Saturday 27 February, Albert Seymour of Osgodby Way celebrated his 91st birthday.
Bert, as he is known to his friends, served in the Royal Navy during the war aboard HMS Tees, a River-class frigate which was tasked with escorting convoys and providing protection from U boats and the Luftwaffe.
He has vivid memories of escorting convoys on the terrible journey to Murmansk, fighting ice and storms as well as the constant threat of attack from the Germans. The escorting of convoys to Malta is also fresh in his mind.
Today, Bert, a very sprightly 91-year-old, is to the best of his knowledge the only surviving crew member of HMS Tees. He attended a ceremony at Middlesbrough some years ago as one of the surviving crew members, Tees being adopted by the town.
If the events of the war were not enough, Bert joined the parachute regiment after the war, making many jumps from Dakota aircraft.
He and his wife moved to Scarborough in 1970 and eventually bought the Raglan Hotel on Devonshire Drive, running it for a number of years.
He received an official invitation from HMS Eaglet, the Royal Naval Headquarters in Liverpool, to attend as an honoured guest the Battle of the Atlantic commemoration service, held in Liverpool Cathedral in 2002.
Sadly, Bert lost his wife, Ivy, last year, but his spirit and determination to soldier on is so typical of those unique men who served their country in its darkest hour.
A man who doesn’t look remotely what one would expect at his age, he will be attending the Mayor’s Ball at the Spa on Friday 4 March, still enjoying dancing and escorting his friend, Olive Childs.