19 Oct 1925 - 25 Jun 2015
Date added: 1 Oct 2015
Leonard Skinner was born on 19th October 1925. Leonard, his brother and both his parents were long time members of the St. John Ambulance Brigade.
His Father Wilfred Charles Skinner was County Officer for Warwickshire until his death serving in SJ during the war in Coventry in April 1941. see his photo. Wilfred joined SJ in 1915.
His mother was Deputy County Officer for Warwickshire, she served from the 1920's, right through the war, and for many years after, until her retirement in 1954. see her photo.
Leonard's brother, Gilbert Skinner served as an ambulance driver during the war, with SJ, and gave his life rescuing injured civilians, taking them to a SJ first aid post during a huge Coventry Blitz on 9th April 1941.
Leonard's father Wilfred Charles Skinner received fatal injuries at the same time, saving the life of his son Leonard, he was treating injured civilians in the SJ ambulance hall during the Coventry blitz on the night of the 9th April 1941.
Leonard Skinner joined SJ as a Cadet in the 1930's and served through the war. He was seriously injured in an air raid in April 1941.
He received the SJ Life Saving Medal, during a Coventry Blitz in 1940, rescuing a mother and child from a bombed out building at the height of an air raid on Coventry. He said afterwards, very modestly, "I don't know what all the fuss is about, I was only doing my duty".
His Father and mother were presented with the Order of St. John by H.M. King George VI at an investiture at Buckingham Palace in 1936. see their photo.
His mother also received a posthumous award for his fathers bravery of the order of St. John from King George VI. Both Leonard and his family received many further SJ awards and medals for their long service to St. John from the 1920's-1954. An annual award for Warwickshire SJ Cadet of the Year, called the "Skinner Trophy" is still given, we believe.
Leonard was a very valued and dedicated member of Warwickshire SJ and that dedication ran through his family. He was a very kind, loving and a gentle man and will be sorely missed by all his family, children and grandchildren, and his friends. Leonard was greatly respected as a man who cared for others and a kind friend.
He died aged nearly 90, in Birmingham in Hospital on June 25th 2015. He was married for 51 years, his wife Maisie died a few years earlier in October 2006, they had a long, very happy and wonderful life together. We shall miss them dearly.