90-year-old war veteran killed by vicious thug who stole just £40 and a bus pass


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Mar 5, 2006
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Planet - Earth
Geoff Bacon was attacked from behind, bundled over and punched in the face by the raider.

The popular 90-year-old broke his hip in the fall and was left desperately banging his walking stick on the hallway floor for 30 minutes to raise the alarm.

Police have launched a murder hunt and offered a £20,000 reward to help catch the robber.

Geoff died of his injuries four months after being attacked at his flat in Camberwell, South London.

His devastated son Philip, 63, said last night: “How could anyone do this to a poor old chap?”

Det Insp Richard Beadle said: “This was a despicable robbery.”

He was a local character loved by all around him, a war hero who rarely spoke of his horrific experiences in the blood and gore of battle.

But brave Geoff Bacon’s life was cruelly snuffed out by a cowardly thug who attacked the frail 90-year-old from behind, bundled him to the ground and punched him in the face before ransacking his flat.

All for £40 and a bus pass. The pensioner broke a hip in the fall and was left banging his walking stick on the hallway floor in a desperate bid to raise the alarm.

Last night his distraught family begged for help to nail the killer – as tributes flooded in from friends and neighbours on the close-knit estate where Geoff lived.

His son Philip said: “How could anyone do that to a poor old chap?

“They went out and shut the door and just left him there. He hammered on the floor with his walking stick for 30 minutes and called out for help until a neighbour heard and called the police. If he had asked my dad he would have given him the money, £30 or £40, whatever he wanted it for.

“There was no need to attack my dad, no need at all.”

Daughter-in-law Jean added: “Why for that small amount of money? And why would you hurt someone so frail? We’re devastated,
absolutely devastated.

“He was the kingpin of the family.”

Great-grandad Geoff, who drove General Eisenhower in the D-Day landings, died from his injuries nearly four months after the raid. Philip told how his dad lost his fighting spirit after the attack on the Peabody Estate in Camberwell, South London – where he had lived for 84 years.

The 63-year-old said: “Losing his *independence was the final straw for him. He became *disillusioned.

“He thought the world of the people of *Camberwell, he loved the place, but when he was in hospital he said ‘It means nothing to me now’. They didn’t have to do this to my dad, they didn’t have to end his life.

“He was very, very well known in the area. He was a very sociable man, he talked to everybody, he was friends with *everybody and he helped everybody.

“If someone left their milk out on the doorstep he would always knock on the door and make sure they were OK.

“He had a real community spirit. He knew everyone in the area.

“I would ask anyone with any information to come forward to help the police and help us come to terms with what’s happened.” Jean, also 63, added: “He couldn’t *understand why someone would do what they did to him.

“He trusted everybody and would have helped anybody. When he was in hospital he said to me ‘I don’t know how it happened because nobody followed me’.”

Police have launched a murder hunt and put up a £20,000 reward to help catch the culprit, said to be a light-skinned black man in his 30s or 40s.

The thug is also thought to have attacked a 63-year-old woman nearby on the same day Geoff was assaulted. She was hit with her own handbag after it was snatched.

Detective Inspector Richard Beadle who is leading the hunt for the killer said: “This was a despicable robbery. We’re talking about an extremely vulnerable elderly man attacked from behind.

“This attack ultimately killed Geoff Bacon and we will do everything in our power to find the person responsible. Geoff was the epitome of the London man. He loved Camberwell and suddenly that lifelong feeling was taken away.”

Geoff, who lived on the estate with wife of 63 years Edith – also known as Kitty – until she died in 2005, was robbed on April 26 after a trip to the shops.

Estate caretaker John Mahoney, 61, said: “We saw him on the morning he was attacked going to get the paper. He was his usual jokey self. When we came back the emergency *services were here.

“They asked me for a ladder to try to get into his house because he was locked in his flat just lying there banging on the floor, crying for help. They smashed the door down.

“This man didn’t attack anyone young or fit, he’s obviously a coward.”

Estate worker Jim Barnes, 52, added: “Geoff was a lovely man, always having a laugh and a joke. Him and Kitty were inseparable but he kept his spirits up after she died.

“He is really missed and people round here still talk about him. The sad thing is if someone was that desperate for money he would have given it to them.”

Geoff – who died in a care home at *Westgate-on-Sea, Kent, near Philip and Jean’s house in Whitstable – began his army career in 1937 when he joined the TA. He was called up on the outbreak of World War Two and served as a driver.

Jean said: “He was a chauffeur in France for the Americans and he had Eisenhower in his car. He was very proud but didn’t like to talk about it very much.

“He was on a ship that got burnt and all of his belongings, including his medals ended up at the bottom of the channel.”

After the war, dad-of-two Geoff became a mechanic and worked for the Post Office. He retired in 1984.

By Jon Clements and Tom Parry
90-year-old war veteran killed by vicious thug who stole just £40 and a bus pass - mirror.co.uk
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Staff member
Jul 15, 2010
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totally sickening, some things are just unforgivable...
see how copes in jail with the real hardmen....


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Sep 15, 2009
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absolutely disgraceful, its horrifying how someone could do this to another human being especially a 90 year old war veteran.

and if it wasn't for this man putting his own life at risk for this country, this scumbag might not be alive today .....


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Jul 15, 2007
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on my way to brum brum
unfortunately this is the world we live in, kids who cant even look after themselves are having kids, and unfortunatly this will just get worse and worse.

very sad, like you say £40 for a life is disgusting, for any life.


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Jun 11, 2009
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Soaring above the clouds
This is disgusting this man has served for queen and country and then gets killed by some lowlife for £40 and a bus pass, I hope he gets his comeuppance in prison.

This should be a prime case for a life for a life.


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Nov 21, 2005
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This is just obscene. It's bad enough that it's happened but can you imagine how you'd feel if it had been your grandfather? I'd be going to prison for a very long time if it was my grandfather and I found out who it was. I wouldn't even care about the reasons behind it. Some liberal a**hole will probably try to justify it because of their upbringing or something but I wouldn't care. This crime is unforgivable and needs to be punished with the ultimate sacrifice.


DW Member ++
Aug 23, 2007
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Some liberal a**hole will probably try to justify it because of their upbringing or something but I wouldn't care. This crime is unforgivable and needs to be punished with the ultimate sacrifice.

Yeah, lots of money in PC leftyism if youre a solicitor or something. Trying to make out that the scumbags who commit these crimes are "victims" of society, as much deserving of sympathy of the REAL victims, pisses me off big style. Boo hoo, mum didnt give you enough hugs as a lad. GRRR!