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Grave of Roger Filer
Base H - Signy Island Antarctica

  ©Copyright W. Townsend - picture taken 1963

Roger Filer was a Fid who it seems slipped while scrambling around a low cliff face such as those in the picture on Gourlay to reach some nests of birds he was working with and fell into the sea. His body was found a few days later.

When going off base we had to record our journey in a book of our route and the daily gashman would check it and raise the alarm if anyone was late in order to send out a rescue party.

Mostly though, we knew that if we had any kind of accident, by the time the rescue party arrived it would be too late, particularly if you ended up in the sea where survival time was measured in a few minutes. Some years after I left base (in 1987), the rules were changed so that you couldn't go off base alone which makes more sense, but I'm glad I was there at a time when we were allowed to go where and when we wanted on Signy itself without having to have anyone with us if we didn't want to.

I think everyone I've ever known who has been to Signy feels an empathy of some sort with Roger Filer, "There but for the grace of God..."

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This picture is one of a collection assembled in 2007 on the 60th anniversary of Signy Island Base: 60°43'S 045°36'W. Thank you to those who sent their treasured memories of their time in Antarctica and allowed them to be made into a commemorative cd and then placed here on the web.

The reunion weekend was 14-16 September 2007.

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