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Thread: SIMKINS DFC and Pirnie DFC 88 Squadron

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    Default SIMKINS DFC and Pirnie DFC 88 Squadron

    I have been researching an 88 Squadron crew who appear to have been operational in the back end of 1943/early 1944 and was wodnering if anybody might be able to help.

    The pilot was Edward Wickins SIMKINS and he was awarded the DFC in 1944 (LG 19/05/1944). I think the navigator (Alistair Pirnie) was also awarded the DFC in 1945 (LG 26/01/1945) and I was wondering if a citation for the awards survive. I'm guessing they may have been end of tour awards, but cannot be certain. The DFC of Pirnie may actually have been for the end of his second tour.

    The regular crew (althought I think there were changes over time) were:

    E W Simkins (RAFVR)
    A Pirnie
    D G Salmond
    W E Burroughs (possibly RCAF)

    An earlier post suggests that a citaion might survive, if only for Pirnie:

    http://www.rafcommands.com/archive/20459.php

    but I am not certain.

    Any help would be great.

    Johnnie

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    Johnnie

    Pirnie's D.F.C. award was reported in a couple of the Scottish newspapers in January 1945. One article records that he was in the R.A.S.C. in France in 1939 aged 18 as a piper and was at the evacuation of Dunkirk. He joined the R.A.F. and trained in Canada.

    The Perthshire Advertiser of January 27th 1945 quotes the citation as follows:

    Now on his third tour of operational duty, Flying Officer Pirnie has attacked some of the enemy's most heavily defended targets. He has participated in sorties against flying-bomb sites and in low-level operations against important industrial targets. Since August, 1944, he has flown in close support of the Allied armies. He has always displayed coolness in [the] face of the enemy, and has achieved some excellent results.

    Regards

    Simon

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    SIMKINS, Edward Wickens, F/O (132170, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve) - No.88 Squadron - Distinguished Flying Cross - awarded as per London Gazette dated 19 May 1944. Born 1919. Educated at St. Roberts College, Chingford. Enlisted 1940; commissioned 1942. Public Record Office Air 2/9626 has citation drafted when he had flown 35 sorties (76 hours) as a pilot. Also in Air Ministry Bulletin 13985. "Now on his second tour of operational duty, this officer has flown on many sorties of a varied nature. He has proved himself a most competent box leader and on one occasion led the squadron with great success. In November 1943, he was detailed for an attack on Audinghen village and successfully identified and bombed the target in very adverse weather. An outstanding pilot, he has consistently displayed a fine fighting spirit and great devotion to duty."

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    Excellent stuff. Thank you both.

    Johnnie

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