FREER, Tom St. Barbe, Pilot Officer (112452) No. 227 Squadron Distinguished Flying Cross. Awarded as per London Gazette dated 5 January 1943. Published citation as follows:

In attacks on enemy shipping, this officer has displayed high skill and courage. In October, 1942, he participated in an attack on an armed motor vessel escorted by a destroyer. In spite of heavy opposing fire, Pilot Officer Freer pressed home his attack. His aircraft sustained much damage but he flew it back to base. In Novem ber, 1942, he bombed a motor vessel off Pantellaria. Some days later, in the same area, he obtained hits with his bombs on another vessel. In this attack, which was executed in face of heavy fire from the shore defences. Pilot Officer Freer flew so low that i of his propellers touched the ship's funnel. His outstanding determination to achieve success has been worthy of the highest praise.

Recommendation dated 22 December 1942. Found as a message to Air Ministry, in AIR 2/4922.

An immediate award of the D.F.C. has been made to P/O Tom St. Barbe Freer (112452) of No. 227 Squadron. This officer has completed 62 (or 63 cpt) operational flying hours having carried out 10 operational sweeps and 5 bombing attacks. Since his arrival in Malta on 24 September, he has been extremely successful in attacks against enemy shipping. On 14 October, he was a member of section of 3 Beaufighters attacking an enemy motor vessel which was armed and escorted by a destroyer. Two Beaufighters were shot down and although his aircraft was severely damaged, P/O Freer scored numerous cannon strikes on the vessel and, by skillful flying, landed his aircraft at base safely. On the 20th November, his was the only bomb carrying Beaufighters in a section of 4 which attacked a motor vessel off Pantellaria. He scored a direct hit with a bomb after which he made repeated attacks with gun. Subsequent reconnaissances proved that this ship sank a few hours later. On November 24, when attacking Palermo with other Beaufighters, owing to very severe icing and thunder clouds also a smoke screen. His was the only aircraft to locate and bomb the town. On 30 November, again piloting a bomb carrying Beaufighters and direct hit with both bombs on a motor vessel near Pantellaria flying so low over the target that his airscrew was damaged against the funnel black smoke and heavy explosions followed the attack which was carried out in spite of much AA from the shore. P/O Freer is one of the most successful twin engine fighter pilots operating from Malta at the present time. His zest for the opportunity to engage the enemy is increased by his successes which are due to his outstanding courage and determination. He is an inspiration to the squadron whose present successful sequence of operations has in large measure been due to his example.