Thomas Oaten – RN – 1941

Name included on Fleet Air Arm memorial at Lee-on-Solent, Hampshire Oaten entered the School in January 1928, and left in June 1933, to enter the estate office of Sir Bernard Greenwell at Marden Park. He was subsequently transferred to the
estate office in Suffolk and continued in this employment until voluntarily enlisting in the Royal Navy (Fleet Air Arm) soon after the outbreak of war. In a letter which was published in the 1939 Sower he wrote: “I was rather dubious about joining at first because it’s Mother who makes the sacrifice, but she told me to go, and this after my father was killed (in the Royal Navy) in the last war.”

Oaten was a prefect, a Patrol Leader in Sheephouse Scout Group, and a prominent member of his House at games. He was a tower of strength as a halfback in the School 1st XI and was one of the best swimmers the School has produced. An Old
Boy on hearing of his death wrote: “Oaten was a fine fellow; he went right into everything he tackled head first. So vital and full of fun. What a doughty fellow he was on the football field – a human dynamo with a heart of a lion.”

Oaten was killed in action at the age of 25 when he was serving on the aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious in January 1941.

He was present at the last Reunion in August 1939.

(Extract from The Sower December 1941)