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POW No: 10511

Charles Henry Waite: 1919-2012

Private in the 2/7th Queen’s Royal Regiment, 1939-1946

POW in Stalag 20B, 1940-1945

Survivor the Long March Five years as a POW, 1940-1945 by Charles Waite with Dee La Vardera. Foreword by Terry Waite CBE. The History Press, 2012.

Charles Waite passed away peacefully at home in Kidderminster on 10 February 2012. Fortunately, he had time to enjoy the fruits of his work. He read some of the wonderful reviews of the book on Amazon and enjoyed seeing family and friends who visited him to receive their own personally signed copies. Charles signed and sold over a 100 books from his front room in Kidderminster, the first week of publication.

Charles on camp farm attached to Stalag 20B.
Charles on camp farm attached to Stalag 20B.
92nd birthday visit to National Memorial Arboretum, 8 May 2011
92nd birthday visit to National Memorial Arboretum, 8 May 2011

His book is a lasting legacy, a reminder of what going to war was really like and the resilience of man to overcome adversity and survive against the odds.

The book reached No 5 in Amazon’s bestellers list for military biography and was reviewed in the Daily Mail by John Preston on 24 February 2012 : ‘Humble hero who survived on pig swill’ and went into a second edition in March 2012.

Death, not surprisingly, is a constant presence throughout, yet for all that, this is a surprisingly uplifting read. Thanks to the force of Waite’s personality, it hums with life on every page.‘Read full review.

Stalag 20B, farm camp propaganda photograph, 1941
Stalag 20B, farm camp propaganda photograph, 1941 Charles, back row, third from the right,

 

Dame Vera Lynn, Patron of the National Ex-Prisoner of War Association (NEXPOWA) writes: ‘I am pleased to see that there are books being written about the prisoners and this episode of a time when people suffered and tried to survive in such terrible conditions during WWII.

Tributes paid to Charles after his death on 10 February 2012 in the Express & Star and the Barking & Dagenham Post

Survivor the Long March Five years as a POW, 1940-1945 by Charles Waite with Dee La Vardera. Foreword by Terry Waite CBE. The History Press, 2012. Available on Amazon.