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David Gommon was born immediately before the outbreak of the First World War. His father was a Londoner born in Battersea, a journeyman carpenter. His mother was a Scot from Fife who was in service when she met her future husband on the Bowes-Lyon estate. David grew up in his Anglo-Scottish household in the streets of Battersea and in the park. He had one older sister. He sang in the choir of his local parish church, he enjoyed watching railway engines at the nearby Nine Elms depot and he remembered seeing a Zeppelin shot down, falling out of the sky burning with the light of the sun.