Bram (Bob) van der Stok, MBE, was born on 13th October 1915 in Sumatra in the Dutch East Indies. He was a World War II fighter pilot and still holds the record as the most decorated aviator in Dutch history. After the war he studied and practised medicine as well as working with the US Coast Guard Auxiliary, participating in 162 rescues. He died in February 1993. Simon Pearson is The Times newspaper obituaries editor and author of The Great Escaper: The Life and Death of Roger Bushell ‘The mastermind behind The Great Escape’ (Hodder).