Winston Churchill, WWII leader’s grandson, dies

Robert Barr
AP/San Francisco Chronicle
3/2/2010

(03-02) 09:18 PST LONDON, United Kingdom (AP) –Winston Spencer Churchill, a former member of Parliament and grandson of Britain’s wartime leader, died Tuesday, an associate said. He was 69.

Churchill had been suffering from cancer and died at his London home, said Cmdr. John Muxworthy, president of the United Kingdom National Defense Association.

Churchill was a member of the House of Commons from 1970 to 1997. Earlier he had been a foreign correspondent for The Times of London, The Daily Telegraph and other papers.

He was a founder of the Defense Association, which campaigned for greater support for Britain’s armed forces.

“A true patriot, WSC followed in the steps of his grandfather, Sir Winston, who, in the 1930s campaigned ceaselessly for this country to rearm in the face of the ever-growing threat from Nazi Germany,” Muxworthy said. “Eighty years on, our Winston has been fighting the same battle.”

Churchill was born in October 1940 at Chequers, the prime minister’s official country residence, shortly after Royal Air Force pilots prevailed in the Battle of Britain. During it, Hitler’s Luftwaffe was prevented from destroying Britain’s air defenses or forcing the country to negotiate an armistice.

He was the son of Randolph Churchill and Pamela Digby, who scandalized London society with her affairs and who, in later life, as Pamela Harriman, became U.S. ambassador to France. The parents divorced in 1945…

…He recalled staying at Chartwell, his grandfather’s home southeast of London, and finding the old man “wreathed in cigar smoke with a whisky and soda already on his table” in the morning. The drink, he added, was very weak.

“Each afternoon, we’d spend a couple of hours together, laying bricks. If anyone had asked me what my grandfather did, I’d have said: He’s a bricklayer,'” Churchill recalled…

The article continues at the Chronicle.

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