Dame Vera Lynn, 102, Calls for a ‘Blitz Spirit’ From Everyone


During World War II, Dame Vera Lynn rose to fame with her magnificent voice singing the forces favorite song; We’ll Meet Again.

She contributed to raising the morale of the troops both at home in the UK, as well as those serving in the other theatres of war.

She regularly visited troops serving all over the world, and by entertaining them, she raised morale.

Vera Lynn sings at a munitions factory in 1941
Vera Lynn sings at a munitions factory in 1941

Not only did she help with the morale of troops, but she also sang regularly in the UK. During the Blitz, she helped authorities to keep the confidence of the public in the UK at a high level.

Everyone was in the same boat, and there was a spirit of helping each other, and everyone looked out for each other.

Now, the world is facing another horrifying battle. This time we cannot see the enemy, there are no bombs, no planes, no bullets, no fire; we are facing an invisible foe, but one that is every bit as lethal as bombs or bullets.

Once again, Dame Vera Lynn has come to the fore and reminded people that our grandparents rose to meet the challenge during the Blitz. Now it is our turn to rise to meet a similar challenge.

The forces sweetheart
The forces sweetheart

Dame Vera, who has just turned 102, has called for everyone to remain positive and that we all need to pull together to beat this epidemic.

She released a photograph of her and her daughter, Virginia Lewis-Jones.  Both are smiling in the picture, and it sends a powerful message that she is positive about how the world is dealing with the virus and that she recommends that everyone follow suit.

Dame Vera is well qualified to ask us to remain positive.  She started performing at age seven and has been the recipient of many awards for her tireless service to entertaining and charities.

She was awarded the honor of being made a Dame in the Birthday Honours List of 1975.  She is also the holder of the Burma Star medal and the 1939-45 War Medal.

Vera Lynn, 1962. Photo by Eric Koch / Anefo CC BY-SA 3.0
Vera Lynn, 1962. Photo by Eric Koch / Anefo CC BY-SA 3.0

In an interview, she said, “In these uncertain times, I am taken back to my time during World War Two, when we all pulled together and looked after each other.

It is this spirit that we all need to find again to weather the storm of the coronavirus (COVID-19). It’s important to remain positive, keep calm, and follow the sensible advice provided by the Government at this difficult time.”

In the same interview, Dame Vera thanked her legions of fans for all the birthday wishes and gifts that she has received on the occasion of her 102rd birthday.  She said that she was overwhelmed by the generosity and kindness of people.

Dame Vera Lynn at the War and Peace Show, 2009. Photo by Nicki CC BY-SA 2.0
Dame Vera Lynn at the War and Peace Show, 2009. Photo by Nicki CC BY-SA 2.0

She feels very fortunate to have reached such an age, and she believes her day will be made very special by hearing from her many fans from around the world.

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She took this opportunity to thank people that had made donations to her Charitable Trust.  She is passionate about the work carried out by her Trust and contributions made to the Trust are the best birthday presents that she can get.

Ian Harvey

Ian Harvey is one of the authors writing for WAR HISTORY ONLINE