SAUNDERSON, Edward John, S/L, DFC (84319) – No. 692 Squadron – Distinguished Service Order – awarded as per London Gazette dated 13 June 1944. General citation read:

One night in May, 1944, several crews of Mosquito aircraft were detailed for a difficult and dangerous mine-laying mission. The operation called for the highest standard of skill and accuracy. In the face of intense anti-aircraft fire, balloon defences and .considerable searchlight activity the attack was pressed home with great precision from low level. That complete success was achieved in spite of such hazards is a high tribute to the calm courage and iron determination shown by the following officers who participated in various capacities as leaders and members of aircraft crew:

Public Record Office Air 2/9156 has recommendation dated 15 May 1944 when he had flown 62 sorties (300 operational hours).

On the night 12/13 May 1944, this officer, as Captain of a Mosquito, took part in a most important low-level operation which required considerable skill and great accuracy. In face of the accurate gunfire from point blank range, he continued to search for his target and finally pressed home his attack with the utmost determination. The successful completion of this operational flight was due to the outstanding courage and devotion to duty of this officer. He is recommended for the immediate award of the Distinguished Service Order.”

(Signed by Wing Commander, Commanding, No. 692 Squadron, P.F.F. Group on 15th May 1944)

This officer has displayed outstanding determination and devotion to duty throughout his operational tour. The mission in which he took part involving low flying and accurate navigation was carried out in the face of heavy gunfire from ground defences. Nevertheless, S/L Saunderson pressed home his attack and successfully completed a very important mission. He has at all times set a high standard to the flight he commands, and for his fine work is recommended for the above award.

(Signed by Group Captain Commanding, R.A.F. Station, Graveley on 16/05/1944)

“Squadron Leader Saunderson took a leading part in the most difficult and dangerous operation of laying mines in the Kiel Canal. The operation was carried out from a low level in the face of guns, searchlights and balloon barrages, and its success depended entirely on most meticulous flying. Squadron Leader Saunderson pressed home his attack with such precision and skill, that it was in every way a complete success. I strongly recommend him the Immediate award of the Distinguished Service Order.

(Signed by Air Vice Marshal, Air Officer Commanding, No. 8 (P.F.F.) Group on 19 May 1944)
(Awarded the D.S.O. (Immediate Award) (Signed by Air Chief Marshal, Commanding-in-Chief, Bomber Command, 25th May 1944)

Dates of sorties, nature of operations, and targets: Night bombing, Grevenbreigh, 20.10.40; night bombing, Magdeburg, 27.10.40; night bombing, Flushing, 30.10.40; night bombing, Gelsenkirchen, .11.40; night bombing, Duisburg,12.11.40; night bombing, Hamburg, 16.11.40; night bombing, Bordeaux, 22.11.40; night bombing, Hamburg, 24.11.40; night bombing, Cologne, 27.11.40; night bombing, Turin, 4.12.40; night bombing, Bordeaux, 8.12.40; night bombing, Berlin, 20.12.40; night bombing, Flushing, 22.12.40; night bombing, Bremen, 1.1.41; night bombing, Rotterdam,9.1.41; night bombing, Rotterdam,15.1.41; night bombing, Sterkrade,15.2.41; night bombing, Brest, 22.2.41; night bombing, Wilhelmshaven, 28.2.41; night bombing, Brest 2.3.41; night bombing, Bremen, 12.3.41; night bombing, Hamburg, 13.3.41; night bombing, Lorient, 15.3.41; night bombing, Brest, 30.3.41; night bombing, Brest, 3.4.41; night bombing, Kiel, 7.4.41; night bombing, Bremen, 16.4.41; night bombing, Brest, 22.4.41; night bombing, Kiel, 25.4.41; night bombing, Kiel, 30.4.41; night bombing, Mannheim, 5.5.41; night bombing, Hamburg, 8.5.41; night bombing, Berlin, 10.5.41; night bombing, Essen, 1.6.42; night bombing, Dusseldorf, 23.1.44; night bombing, Berlin, 27.1.44; night bombing, Berlin, 30.1.44; night bombing, Frankfurt, 4.2.44; night bombing, Berlin, 10.2.44; night bombing, Stuttgart, 20.2.44; night bombing, Berlin, 4.3.44; night bombing, Duisburg, 10.3.44; night bombing, Munchen Gladbach, 11.3.44; night bombing, Frankfurt, 13.3.44; night bombing, Dusseldorf, 14.3.44; night bombing, Cologne, 17.3.44; night bombing, Kassel, 18.3.44; night bombing, Cologne, 21.3.44; Dortmund, 23.3.44; night bombing, Hanover, 26.3.44; night bombing, Kiel, 29.3.44; night bombing, Hanover, 1.4.44; night bombing, Cologne, 4.4.44; night bombing, Essen, 8.4.44; night bombing, Hanover, 10.4.44; night bombing, Osnabruck, 12.4.44; night bombing, Berlin, 13.4.44; night bombing, Cologne, 17.4.44; night bombing, Cologne, 20.4.44; night bombing, Mannheim, 22.4.44; night bombing, Hamburg, 26.4.44; mine laying, special mission, 12.5.44. Total operational hours: 300.