Meeting Tom Lackey
Today Michael Abley, Sophie Lees and myself (Dicken Richards) met Tom Lackey for the first time and I just have to say the guy is a truly amazing man. He is a family man, a WWII veteran, ran his own business for many years and now a wing walker which he didn’t start until he was 81 years of age. Lackey is over 90 years old and is a true gentleman. Today we found out about his life and who he really is. You would think at being 90 years old his days are past him and his stories have been told but we found out that he plans to cross the English Channel once more whilst wing walking in May 2011.
His life was so full of stories and the best thing about it was that it wasn’t just the traditional old people rambling. Perhaps I feel a little bad about just concentrating on such a small portion of his life but sadly only have 3 minutes in which to fit it into.
Tom Lackey had always wanted to be a pilot but during WWII he had no option but to become a commando. His older brother also wanted to be a pilot and was given the unsavoury task of flying a bomber during the Battle of Britain. Tom had the option to join him but his brother sadly lost his life before they could work together.
After the War Tom Lackey became a fully qualified pilot however, it wasn’t until he was 81 when a friend won the chance to do some plane aerobatics. Tom was offered the place instead as his friend was too scared to carry out the stunts. The adrenaline rush he got from doing such stunts as barrel rolls and loop-the-loops was a great experience for him with the stunt pilot rather impressed and this lead to the stunt pilot to suggest wing walking.
Like many people Lackey didn’t know much if anything about wing walking but was very intrigued by the idea. So at the age of 81 Tom Lackey took to the skies as a wing walker. Since doing these stunts he has met many people such as Vera Lynn and Pauline Quirke.
His home is just littered with rewards, recognitions and without doubt the best aviation picture I have ever seen, People playing tennis on the wings of a plane in flight.
Tom Lackey was more than happy to let us film a documentary about his wing walking escapades. After we figure out quite how to film everything we will contact Mr Lackey, hopefully within the next few days to arrange to film him.