Books - by Leonard J. Gill
Books - by Leonard J. Gill(attended the Prince of Wales School - New/Grigg House, 1944-1948)
The humorous snapshots of a boy growing up in
Kenya, and the people he meets on his way to adulthood form a
joyous and often engrossing celebration of life in general.
"The book covers the first ten years on my
life from 1930, the attitudes I adopted, and events I and my
family experienced, together with tales about some of the famous
and infamous characters we met. These include visits from the
Prince of Wales and his experiences with Beryl Markham, various
"white hunters", and, of course, the shenanigans of my school
- Len Gill
"The book covers the emergence of the young adult
years of my life from 1940, the attitudes I adopted, and events I and my
family experienced, together with tales about some of the famous and
infamous characters we met. My own adventures in which I faced serious
injury and even death didn't make me more circumspect.
I walked through life confident in my immortality,
like a cat with twenty-nine lives, and with a sense of fun and growing
Hesitant steps toward youthful romance were met with
mild disappointment and an arrogant belief that girls were of little value
beyond being useful targets for pranks"
- Len Gill
This book describes
Len's experiences during his years as a pupil of the Prince of Wales School,
Entertaining tales of a Kenya
Regiment soldier serving with the Kings African Rifles in anti-Mau-Mau
terrorist operations. Amid the serious incidents, there are humorous and
enchanting anecdotes of unforgettable characters. The book covers the
relationships Len had with his African troops and their experiences which
led to mutual respect and comradeship. Together they faced danger from
terrorist ambushes, rogue animals and the cold, damp climate of high
altitude and nutritionally inadequate diet. Sensitive contacts with the
civil population led to trust and friendship toward him and his soldiers.
More Military Musings
Leonard Gill, a Kenya-born
English lad, will keep you enthralled by stories of the fight against
Mau-Mau terrorists in the forests of Kenya. As we have come to expect from
Len, this book will keep you chuckling at some of his tales and those of the
African troops with whom he served.
Remembering the Regiment
Kenya settlers, of European extraction, performed
enthusiastically in a variety of roles in the Emergency Forces: Serving in
Kenya Regiment companies; serving as patrol commanders attached to the Kings
African Rifles with African troops, and with British regiments as guides,
tracker handlers and advisers; as District Officers with the Kikuyu Guard as
leaders and instructors in military skills; as pseudo Mau-Mau terrorists; as
policemen; as pilots with the Kenya Police Air Wing; as criminal
investigation and intelligence officers. They participated with good humor
and enthusiasm at all levels and gave their expertise freely. Many were
extraordinarily effective and many served in isolation from their superior
officers, who relied on their initiative.
About the Author
Born in Kenya, East Africa, of English parents in December 1930,
Len lived there until 1989.
Even in a period of anti-Mau Mau Rebellion operations Len found
sensitive and happy incidents among the hell of bloodshed and
Africans dubbed him with the nickname Mpenda raha (he who
enjoys a good time). Len insists that a shot-glass of humor helps
the worries go down.
Len served with African troops. With them, Len matured in a way
that enabled him to balance horror with humor.
Len now lives in Glenwood Springs, Colorado with his wife, Kaye
and Shih-tzu, Bandit.
Webmaster received an e-mail from Kaye Gill on 20th March
My best friend is
no longer with me. Len died on Monday, 13 March. He went so
soon, and because of VERY heavy pain-killers, there was no
(Len had been suffering from
cancer of the lower back, diagnosed just recently)
For anyone who
lived through this very difficult time in Kenya's history, this is a "must
have" for the bookshelf.
To purchase any of these books, please go to
www.trafford.com or www.amazon.co.uk
or contact Len's widow, Kaye, by e-mail