Just wanted a thread opened for a man who will be sorely missed. To fight in WWII he lied about his age to sign up and actively do something in WWII which just shows the passion this Singh had to fight injustice. He was known around Wolverhampton a lot and was often seen.
I was there at the end of the special programme today at GNG Sedgley St in Wolverhampton. Amongst tears and tissues was laughter and celebration for a guy who done so much and led an amazing life. He was a great grandfather and there was family n friends from around the world. It really was quite emotional to see.
I didnt know the life he had led until today as i read the news snippet posted on the board at the Gurdwara. I regret not ever talking to him now and finding out what his life was like, his thoughts, his experiences... and i looked around and saw so many other "old" people who i would never talk to like Pakhar Singh Ji - and i wonder what they have been through in their lifetime... what they've seen... experienced... felt.
Anyway, heres to him who really is a legend.
Honoured vet dies aged 86
A highly decorated former soldier who was one of the region’s last remaining Asian servicemen from the Second World War, has died.
Pakhar Singh Khela, of Fowler Street, Blakenhall, Wolverhampton, died on June 8, at the age of 86 after battling prostate cancer. Mr Khela lied about his age so he could sign up and fight, at just 17.
He was a member of the Sikh Regiment D Company after joining the Indian Army in 1938 and went on to be honoured with the Burma Star campaign medal.
His grandson Kuldip Khela, aged 34, said Mr Khela completed a total of 15 years of military service with the British and Indian armies.
Kuldip said: “It was his life. “He was so proud of being able to serve his country and never missed a Remembrance Parade.
“He had some difficulties with language and hearing when he met his old comrades but they would look at each other’s medals and there would be an instant respect and bond.
“It was very touching.”
Mr Khela’s distinguished military record meant he was given dispensation to move to England with his family before the mass immigration from India.
He arrived in 1963 and worked in Wolverhampton’s heavy industries, including Qualcast, until his retirement.
He was extensively involved in the Royal British Legion, the Sikh Temples and the inter faith community.
Mr Khela’s wife Rattan Kaur Khela passed away in January this year.
He leaves two sons, two daughters, 12 grandchildren and 19 great grandchildren.
Kuldip said: “He will be greatly missed by all sections of the community because he was a great example of what it needs.
“He was so proud to serve and protect his country and encouraged everyone else to do the same,” added Kuldip.
Mr Khela’s funeral service is to take place at 3pm on June 18 in Bushbury Crematorium.
A memorial service will then be held at the Guru Nanak Gurdwara, in Duncan Street, Blakenall, from 4pm.