Date: 14th January 1944 (Friday)
Unit: No. 64 Squadron (motto: Tenax propositi - 'Firm of purpose')
Type: Spitfire IX
Base: RAF Coltishall, Norfolk
Location: English Channel off Dieppe
Pilot: Fl/Lt. Harry Robert Godfrey Poulton 742582 RAFVR Age 25. PoW Stalag Luft Barth Vogelsang
REASON FOR LOSS:
During a patrol on the morning of the 14th January engaged in combat and hit. The pilot baled out very low with the Spitfire crashing into the English Channel.
He suffered a broken leg and was quickly captured by the Germans. Taken to the hospital at Amiens for further treatment where he remained for a couple of months, sent to Dulag Luft at Frankfurt, moving soon afterwards to Stalag Luft 1 at Barth.
The leg didn't heal properly so the Red Cross Commission passed him for a rare Repatriation Exchange. He left Berlin in January 1945 and after an operation in England he was released from the RAF in 1946.
Earlier on the 15th January 1942 whilst engaged on an Army Co-Operation exercise, the propeller of his Spitfire P9500 severed the tail of Spitfire AR249 flown by 21 year old, F/O. John Harcourt Pickering. F/O. Pickering 80821 RAFV was killed. F/O. Poulton managed to make a wheels up landing suffering only bruises. Both pilots were Battle of Britain veterans and instructors at 53 Operational Training Unit.
DFC Citation 25th May 1943:
'Fl/Lt. Poulton has completed a very large number of sweeps over enemy territory in the course of which he has destroyed at least two enemy aircraft and damaged others'.
Burial and other details:
None, Fl/Lt. Harry Poulton survived the war. Born on the 19th September 1918 at Dorking in Surrey. Son of Harry Poulton (killed 8th October 1918, age 28) and Sylvia Olive Poulton (died 1974), of Abinger Hammer, Dorking, Surrey, husband of Nancie Dallyn. Retired on the 19th September 1968, passed away May 1998, age 70.
F/O. John Harcourt Pickering. Llantwit Major Cemetery. Sec. C. Grave 24. Born on 28th October 1920. Son of Albert Edward and Gladys Elsie Pickering, of Reading, Berkshire. Grave inscription: 'Resurgam'. (I shall rise again)
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of these pilots with thanks to sources as quoted below:
At the going down of the sun, and in the morning we will remember
them. - Laurence
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