Letter from Godfrey Runyard to AW dated 20th September 2009 (double click on letters to enlarge for reading) .
Even if Godfrey Runyard was just known for his great age of 104 alone he would still be regarded as a remarkable man. Godfrey is the oldest man alive who actually knew 'Lawrence of Arabia' or T.E. Shaw as he was then known. After Lawrence was killed in a motorcycling accident in May 1935, it was Godfrey who went to retrieve his motocycle from the accident site. He also was to help put Lawrence in his coffin ready for burial at Moreton cemetery in Dorset
Godfrey now lives in retirement in the town of Hemet, southern California with his wife Cindy.
When I was contemplting a long trip which would have involved a stay of six days in San Francisco I though it might be interesting to make contact with California Group members of the T.E. Lawrence Society. Carol Darbyshire, TEL Society newsletter editor, made me aware of Godfrey Runyard, oldest man alive who knew Lawrence, and thought there may be chance to visit Godfrey at his home in Hemet. However I found that Hemet is a long way from San Francisco. I wrote a letter to Godfrey about my proposed visit. It was like reaching out to history. Godfrey replied to me by letter on the 20th Septemer 2009 also sending a photo (see above). However my visit was to eventually fall through. I hope Godfrey is another Harry Patch and lives to be 110 or more.