William Edward Thomas
2nd September 1925 - 19th February 2014
William was born in West London in 1925. He left The Brompton Oratory School when he was 14 and started work as a messenger at the BBC. When war broke out, his mother insisted he left central London and went to work with his father at a factory in Harrow. While still a teenager, William joined the army and was soon recruited in to the parachute regiment. By the time peace had been declared in Europe in May 1945, he had been “dropped” in to a number of key battles and become a much decorated soldier. He was still only 19 years old.
Following the war, William served in Palestine until 1948.
He has always believed passionately that education leads to opportunity. He has studied part time for both a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts degree and was one of the first students to enrol with The Open University.
William has six children. As they were growing up, he was working and studying in shifts as a merchant seaman and an engineer, working his way from factory shop floor to management. In his mid fifties, he decided to work full time as a lab technician at his Alma Mater, The Open University and remained there until his retirement. It was during his retirement that he decided to set himself the challenge of writing a novel. The Cypress Branches is the result.
William's health started deteriorating shortly after finishing The Cypress Branches and he was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2006. After a decade-long battle against the disease, William passed away peacefully in February 2014, surrounded by his family. He was 88.
Part two of the Cypress Branches trilogy, It Never Was You is the eagerly anticipated follow up to the acclaimed Pegasus Falling, continuing William E. Thomas's epic and panoramic saga of how ordinary people coped with some most extraordinary and devastating events of the 20th century.
A broken down truck blocking a bridge over the river in rural Holland leads to an unexpected encounter between a Dutch woman and an English holiday maker. Could this middle-aged, bearded man really be the young soldier she had fallen in love with when he dropped from the skies to capture the very same bridge 30 years ago?
FINALIST - The Kindle Book Review Best Indie Book Contest 2012. Pegasus Falling is a heartbreaking and courageous work following the emotional story of paratrooper Sammy and his battle to stay alive, sane and keep hold of the woman he loves amongst the terrors of World War II and its aftermath.