As the loving family of a 101-year-old ex-military pilot said their final goodbyes at a cemetery, something quite special happened that moved everyone in attendance.

Just after Kenneth Oatley, an Ipswich businessman and veteran who fought in the Second World War, had been put to rest at Rushmere Church, a single Spitfire aircraft swooped in overhead.

Mr Oatley's family said they had no idea who was flying the aircraft and were not aware of any plans for this to happen.

The Second World War aircraft was an emotional and uplifting reminder of Mr Oatley's amazing work in the war and his love of flying.

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His son, Rodger Oatley, said: "We were just about to walk back as the ceremony was over and then we heard the noise. I could hear the engine and I knew straight away what it was. Then I saw the shape of the wings and I was delighted.

"My sister was really struggling with the whole thing and seeing this plane just brought so much happiness to all of us.

"It was really amazing and it gave us a sense of peace as it roared overhead. Finally, when it settled off into the distance I thought, wow, what a fitting farewell."

East Anglian Daily Times: Ken Oatley and his family celebrating his 101st birthday last yearKen Oatley and his family celebrating his 101st birthday last year (Image: Family archives)

Mr Oatley was born in Somerset and served with RAF Bomber Command during the Second World War as a navigator with 627 Mosquito Squadron and he took part in 22 operations - including the infamous Dresden raid in February 1945.

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For many people in Ipswich, Mr Oatley was a familiar face as the proprietor of The Oriental Restaurant in Westgate Street, a business he set up when returned to Suffolk.

He also ran a bakery in Frobisher Road, six cake shops across the Ipswich area and owned various other small businesses. 

Mr Oatley died aged 101 on September 13 last year and his loving family buried him in May after a eight-month long inquest into the cause of his death after an operation. 

He is survived by his son Rodger, daughter Jill and one great-granddaughter. 

This newspaper has contacted various businesses and hangers which fly Spitfire aircraft in the Suffolk area, but we have not yet found who was flying the mystery military plane.