Taxi Charity supporting veterans through pandemic, TAXI

The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans has been supporting veterans since 1948 and during the COVID-19 pandemic has called on London’s black cabbies and charity supporters to go the extra mile to ensure that veterans have someone to chat with or to do their shopping.

Last week, the Chairman of the Taxi Charity, Ian Parsons, did some shopping for WWII veteran Harry Rawlins, who lives in Edgware. Harry, an Arnhem veteran, was in the 8th Armoured Brigade, 30 Corps and was part of Operation Market Garden in September 1944. Every year Harry joins the trips organised by the Taxi Charity to the Netherlands for the Arnhem commemoration services.

Ian called at the local supermarket and delivered bags of shopping to Harry’s door and had a chat, while always maintaining the required two metres distance.

Harry Rawlins, WWII veteran, said, “The Taxi Charity are truly a lifeline. For many years I have joined the charity on trips to the continent to pay my respects to the comrades who didn’t come home, on day trips throughout the South East and at parties and social gatherings. The care they show to us veterans is amazing and they have really enriched my life by giving me the opportunity to meet regularly with other veterans. Being socially isolated is very difficult but the regular contact I receive from Ian and Anne, his wife and knowing that there are always people that I can call on for help is a very reassuring position to be in.”

As a Bren Gunner on one occasion, he acted entirely on his own initiative by engaging enemy who had pinned a Section down exposing himself to considerable danger, he neutralised the enemy fire, released his section and paved the way to a successful attack.