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Thread: British in 302 Sqn

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    Default British in 302 Sqn

    Hi,

    I'm looking for informations about British pilots who served in 302 Squadron in 1940:

    S/Ldr William Satchell
    F/Lt William Riley
    F/Lt John Thomson
    F/Lt James Farmer
    F/O Peter Carter (KIA 18 X 1940)
    F/Lt John Finnis

    Thanx in advance

    Greg

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    Hi Greg

    Is your John Finnis this chap?

    FINNIS, John Frederic Fortescue ‘Jack’, Flt. Lt., SR80035, SRAF/RAFVR, S. Rhodesian
    de Havilland Flying Instructor, SRAU, Belvedere & Salisbury [Harare], 1938
    grntd. com. in RAFVR as Prob. Flt. Lt. for DoH, 1 Aug 1940 (sen. 5 Dec 1939)
    1 Sqn. (Spit. I), Northolt, early Sep 1940; 1 Dam. Do17, 7 Sep 1940
    229 Sqn. (Hurr. I), FM 18 Oct 1940; 1D Me109, 14 Nov 1940
    postings wanting Nov 1940-Jun 1942
    IFA in Hurr. I, P3588, Little Hulton, 13 Feb 1941
    conf. as Flt. Lt. (since prom.), 1 Aug 1941 (gaz. 19 Sep 1944)
    att. 41 Sqn. for patrol (in W3654) w. Actg. Flt. Lt. W. Palmer (W3852), 16:55-17:25, 11 Feb 1942
    Temp. Sqn. Ldr., 1 Jun 1942 (sen. 1 Mar 1941)
    Flt. Cdr., 127 Sqn. (Hurr. IIb), Shandur, Egypt, 9 Jun 1942
    Actg. Sqn. Ldr. & CO, 33 Sqn. (Hurr. IIc), N. Africa, 20 Jul-31 Oct 1942
    postings wanting Nov 1942-Sep 1945
    com. as Flt. Lt. (Temp. Sqn. Ldr.) in RAF relinquished on reversion to SRAF, 8 Sep 1945

    As you can see, there are a number of holes in the information I have, so I would appreciate if you could pass on to me any information you have to help feel my blanks, please.

    Finnis did a patrol with 41 Squadron in February 1942, but I have as yet been unable to establish whether he was actually posted to 41 Squadron, or only attached for a single operation.

    Regards
    Steve
    41 (F) Squadron RAF at War and Peace, April 1916-March 1946
    http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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    Hi, Steve,

    Yes, that's this pilot. He was in 302 for short time (in November and December 1940) and he shot down probably one Ju 88 with two Polish pilots on 10 December


    Thanks for answer,

    Greg

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    Hi Greg

    I have subsequently found out that Finnis was a pilot with Cairo to Capetown Airways prior to the War, and that he converted to bombers around 1944. He attended 5 Lancaster Finishing School at Syerston in 1944, but was thrown out after an incident with two other Officers in the Officers Mess. Around this time, possibly as a result of the incident, he returned to Rhodesia and continued flying until the end of the War. Post-war, he become an Air Traffic Controller with the Department of Civil Aviation, and apparently committed suicide in 1954, though I have not yet found any proof of this.

    I am in touch with a chap who knows someone who was at Syerston with Finnis - which is where the above additional information comes from - and am trying to find out more. I'll let you know if anything else comes to light.

    In the meantime, do you have more exact dates on Finnis' time with 302 Squadron, and do you know which unit he was with when he had his flying accident in February 1941?

    Thanks
    Steve
    41 (F) Squadron RAF at War and Peace, April 1916-March 1946
    http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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    G'Day Greg/Steve.

    Casualties 13th February 1941

    229 Squadron Hurricane P3588

    Crashed at Walkden due to engine failure

    P/O. Finnis safe.

    See:
    Air War 1941:The Turning Point Part 1.
    Foreman,John
    Walton on Thames:Air Research Pubs.,1994.
    pp.134-5
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 10th January 2009 at 13:57. Reason: minor correction

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    Thanks a lot for informations of J. Finnis.

    Steve - Finnis came to 302 Sqn on 17th November (by ORB). That is a date when he made his first combat sortie in 302 Sqn. There is no date of living this unit in ORB but I found 13th December in one book. I will check it in Chronicle of this unit on Monday.

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    I have no verify information that F/lt Riley killed later during the war. Is that true?

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    Thanks Col and Greg for this additional information.
    Steve
    41 (F) Squadron RAF at War and Peace, April 1916-March 1946
    http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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    Hi Greg, here's info on Farmer:

    http://www.rafweb.org/Biographies/Farmer.htm

    Cheers, Tom

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    Satchell
    - Left 302 01/1941. HMS Ark Royal directing Hurricanes to Malta, 20/12/41 Station Commander Ta Kali, Malta. 1/5/42 Air HQ Malta. DSO 6/10/42. Awarded Polonia Rostituta late 1950. Retired 1/7/56. Died 03/1986.(Men of the Battle of Britain, Aces High)

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