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As the D-Day commemorations take place today (6 June), spare a thought for those who were born on this date in 1944 and whose names reflect the world-shaping events taking place at the time.
Looking for stories, newspaper journalists called hospitals in search of parents who had christened their offspring Bernard (after Montgomery, the British military commander), Dwight (as in Eisenhower, the US commander-in-chief), or Bertram (the first name of naval supremo Admiral Ramsay).
In Hastings, meanwhile, fisherman Bert White celebrated the birth of his son by visiting several local pubs, where the talk was all about the D-Day landings taking place on the other side of the Channel.
Inspired, Bert then headed off to the local registry office where he persuaded staff to enter the name Deeday for his child, in conjunction with Rodney, after the battleship on which the youngster’s uncle was serving.
Celebrating his 75th birthday today, Mr White, whose birth certificate interestingly lists him as “Rodney”, still lives in the Sussex town where he runs an antique shop.
A history enthusiast, he’s been closely involved in the restoration of a former lifeboat, the Cyril and Lilian Bishop, that took part in the evacuation of Dunkirk in 1940. The plan is to take it back to France for the 80th anniversary of that event next year.
In keeping with family tradition, Mr White’s son also lists “Deeday” among his forenames.