Fireman Ivor Charles Day was killed by enemy aerial bombardment at Shanklin on 3 January 1943.

 

Ivor was one of several London firemen present in Shanklin on the day of the tip-and-run aerial attack. 

The 1911 census lists him as a seven year old living with his parents Arthur and Charlotte, two siblings and two of his mothers relatives at 8 Northcott Avenue, Wood Green, Edmonton, north London. Although his father was only 38 at the time he was listed as a retired meat market buyer. 

In 1921 at the age of 18 he set off for a new life in Canada, arriving at Quebec on 30 July with the stated intention of staying for life, his first port of call being his Uncle Fred's farm at Souris, Manitoba where he planned to earn a living as a farm labourer. Fred had made several trips across the Atlantic over the preceding twenty years and another while Ivor was at his farm and it seems likely that he was a Boer War veteran who took advantage of the land bounty made available to soldiers of the war in the hope of populating the expanding territories. 

Perhaps the grass wasn't as green as Ivor had hoped for on 21 October 1923 he arrived back at Liverpool headed for his parents home now in London's Palmers Green.

What happened to him over the next twenty years remains hidden but he wasn't the only London fireman at Shanklin on that fateful day. It's only a theory but it's known that some of the London firefighters who had withstood the hell of the London Blitz of 7 September 1940 to 11 May 1941, were despatched to 'lower risk' areas in the aftermath to give them an opportunity to mentally recover. If that is the case it makes the random nature of his premature death all the more tragic in its ghastly irony. 

Ivor was within the requisitioned Gloster Hotel, used as Shanklin NFS headquarters, when a 500kg high explosive bomb made a direct hit, killing twelve members of the NFS including Ivor.

Rest in peace Fireman Day.