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Britons to honor Czechoslovaks who fought for RAF

March 11, 2014

PRAGUE (AP) — The British community in the Czech Republic has donated money to build a memorial to honor 2,500 Czechoslovaks who fought against Nazi Germany in Britain’s air force.

The initiative was announced Tuesday by Jan Thompson, Britain’s ambassador to Prague. The two-meter (6-foot-6) bronze statue of a winged lion by Colin Spofforth will be unveiled June 17.

Thompson said the role of the airmen “was particularly important at critical stages, not least of which was the Battle of Britain.”

Corporate and individual sponsors have donated almost 100,000 pounds ($168,000) for the project.

The soldiers, including 88 respected pilots, fled Czechoslovakia occupied by Nazi troops to join the Royal Air Force. They participated in the Battle of Britain, Germany’s unsuccessful attempt to destroy the RAF. Some 500 died.

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