Today, known as Battle of Britain Day, marks the 79th anniversary of the Battle of Britain, and is an opportunity for us to remember 'The Few' who defended our skies from July to October 1940.
On this day, 79 years ago, the Luftwaffe embarked on an all-out attack against London and around 1,500 aircraft took part in the air battles which lasted throughout the day.
To mark the occasion, the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund, which is currently celebrating its centenary, is renewing its call to the British public to Join the Search. Change a Life asking people to think about who they know who may have served in the RAF and may now need support.
Research conducted by the charity suggests 35% of the public (or one in three) know someone who served, or is serving, in the RAF. They may be friends or relatives and the charity is encouraging them to get in touch.
Our charity has found potential beneficiaries are often reluctant to ask for help, or come forward too late, due to feelings of pride, or a belief that "someone else deserves the support more". They sometimes need friends and family to encourage them to get 'back on the radar' and accessing support from the Fund that is rightfully theirs.
We believe there are up to 100,000, mainly older, members of the RAF Family in urgent need of support but are not seeking it.
To renew the call, our Join the Search. Change a Life. advertising relaunches today, featuring Sir David Jason and, for the first time, Sue Holderness.
Air Vice-Marshal David Murray, Chief Executive of the RAF Benevolent Fund, said: "We must never forget the sacrifices of The Few, without who the Second World War may have turned out very differently. They defended Britain at an incredibly perilous time. Many gave their lives, while those who survived were often left physically or mentally scarred. We are all indebted to them.
"Sadly, very few of this generation remain with us. However, our duty is not over. Since the Battle of Britain, many other generations have served, including the hundreds of thousands who undertook National Service. The youngest of whom is now 75. It is all of our responsibility to help them, in their time of need, so we're asking their friends or relatives to help us encourage them to seek support.
"We must reach them and their partners, before it's too late."
If you know someone who could benefit from our support, you can request our help or call us on 0300 102 1919.