SEARBY, John Henry, A/S/L (43128, Royal Air Force) - No.106 Squadron - Distinguished Flying Cross - awarded as per London Gazette dated 20 April 1943. Born in Whitlasey (?), Cambridgeshire, 1913. Enlisted 1929; remustered as Sergeant Pilot in 1936. Leading Aircraftman J.H. Searby awarded Distinguished Pass on completion of flying training course at No.3 Flying Training School, Grantham, as reported in Aeroplane of 14 October 1936. Commissioned 1940. Later awarded DSO. Mentioned in Despatches, 14 June 1945 (Group Captain). Reverted in rank in postwar RAF; promoted from Squadron Leader to Wing Commander, 1 July 1947. Air Ministry Bulletin 9917 has DFC citation. Flight Commander.

This officer has displayed marked determination in locating and bombing the target with precision. His leadership and courage are exceptional. He is an outstanding flight commander whose efforts have been most meritorious.

SEARBY, John Henry, A/G.C, DFC (43128) No. 83 Squadron Distinguished Service Order awarded as per London Gazette dated 7 September 1943.

One night in August, 1943, this officer participated in a bombing attack on an important target at Peenemunde. Enemy fighters.were extremely active over the target area, but in spite of this Group Captain Searby executed his difficult task with consummate skill. He displayed faultless leadership, great courage and resolution throughout. Acting Wing Co

Public Record Office Air 2/4995 has recommendation drafted 20 August 1943 when he had flown 37 sorties (247 hours five minutes).

On the night of 17/18th, August, 1943, when a heavy and extremely concentrated bombing attack was conducted against the Radio Research Laboratories at Peenemunde, Group Captain Searby, who had twice previously carried out similar tasks, was ordered to remain in view of the target, and by means of radio control, to direct the main bombing force on to the precise aiming point.

This extremely difficult and exacting task was executed with consummate skill and is all the more praiseworthy as it necessitated Group Captain Searby remaining in the well defended target area for 30 minutes, while no less than 20 and probably more bomber aircraft were shot down by enemy fighters. The magnificent leadership, tenacity of purpose and devotion to duty displayed by Group Captain Searby is deserving of the highest praise.

I therefore strongly recommend Group Captain Searby for the immediate award of the Distinguished Service Order.

(Signed by Group Captain, Commanding, R.A.F. Station, Wyton, Hunts, on 20 August 1943). Also strongly recommended by Air Commodore, Commanding, Path Finder Force, No. 8 Group) on 20 August, 1943)

Operational Sorties of Group Captain J.H. Searby, D.F.C.

Bremen, 12.10.41; Hamburg, 31.10.41; Dunkirk, 4.11.41; Boulogne, 7.11.41; Genoa, 6.11.42; Genoa, 13.11.42; Turin, 18.11.42; Turin, 20.11.42; Stuttgart, 22.11.42; Mannheim, 6.12.42; Turin, 8.12.42; Munich, 20.12.42; Essen, 13.1.43; Berlin, 16.1.43; Dusseldorf, 27.1.43; Lorient, 13.2.43; Milan, 14.2.43; Bremen, 21.2.43; Nurenburg, 25.2.43; Cologne, 26.2.43; St. Nazaire, 28.2.43; Berlin, 1.3.43; Essen, 12.3.43; Nurenburg, 8.3.43; Nurenburg, 9.3.43; Stuttgart, 11.3.43; Essen, 12.3.43; Kiel, 4.4.43; Dortmund, 4.5.43; Dortmund, 23.5.43; Wuppertal, 29.5.43; Le-Creusot, 19.6.43; Turin, 12.7.43; Hamburg, 24.7.43; Turin, 7.8.43; Milan, 14.8.43; Peenenumde, 18.8.43.