Alan Palmer writes:
IT WAS heartening to read the fine tributes to my friend
Canon John Thurmer (Gazette, 13
February). We shared digs as undergraduates at Oriel, and he
was best man at my wedding. I would, however, like to emphasise the
traumatic legacy to him of the bombing, by Irgun terrorists on 22
July 1946, of British headquarters in the King David Hotel,
Jerusalem: 91 soldiers and civilians were killed. For John's
courage and initative in rescue work, he was, as a 19-year-old
sergeant mentioned in despatches.
He rarely mentioned the bombing, but I think that even as an
undergraduate it gave his vocation a broad sense of pastoral care
which we respected. When, in 1949, a fire broke out in the Oriel
library, we found that he had also retained a practical gift of
calmly and swiftly responding to an emergency.