War hero commemorated in pro life essay prize
14 September 2000
War hero commemorated in pro-life essay prize Westminster, 14 September, 2000--School and college students will win cash prizes in an essay competition in memory of a distinguished Second World War RAF fighter-pilot and pro-life activist. The Robin McNair Prize is jointly sponsored by the SPUC Educational Research Trust and the family of the late Squadron Leader McNair, and is open to pupils in years 11, 12 and 13 (aged 15 to 18). The first, second and third prizes will be £250, £150 and £100 respectively and the winners' schools or colleges will also receive a similar sum. Prizes will be awarded at the Houses of Parliament next summer and winners will be given lunch and tea in parliament. Judges will include Rt Hon John Gummer, MP for Suffolk Coastal and former secretary of state for the environment, Mr Jonathan Evans, MEP for Wales, and the Marchioness of Salisbury. Entrants will be asked to write an essay of between 1,000 and 1,500 words on one of the following subjects: * Robin McNair believed fighting for justice for unborn children was as important as fighting for justice in the Second World War. Do you agree? * Every unborn child has a right to life. Discuss. * Some people say that a woman's right to choose to have an abortion over-rides her unborn baby's right to life. Discuss. Squadron Leader Robin McNair completed nearly 500 missions with the RAF, including: * operations during the Battle of Britain * night-fighter flights during the blitz * attacks on enemy bases and rocket sites * the Dieppe raid * D-day He was also among the leaders of the Death and Glory operations, in which Typhoon fighters carried bombs across the English Channel. Robin McNair, who rose quickly from aircraftsman to squadron leader, was twice awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. He was then appointed one of the youngest acting wing commanders in the Second World War. He upheld the memory of those who lost their lives on both sides and, when hostilities ended, Squadron Leader McNair spent many years helping refugees on the continent. Soon after abortion was made legal in Britain, Robin McNair joined the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) and fought for the most defenceless members of society. He was chairman of SPUC's Ealing, London, branch. John Smeaton, national director of SPUC, said: "We are pleased and honoured to be associated with the memory of one of the 20th century's most courageous and compassionate defenders of human dignity and freedom." Information and an entry form are available at www.spuc.org.uk/mcnair and can be obtained by writing to the Robin McNair Award, SPUC Educational Research Trust, 5 St Matthew Street, London, SW1P 2JT, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or faxing (020) 7222 0630 or telephoning (020) 7222 5845. The closing date for entries is 31 January 2001.