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The Airmen's Stories - P/O G M Forrester


George Mathwin Forrester was born in Newcastle on 17th February 1914 and attended Eastmans School, Southsea and then Haileybury College from 1927 to 1930.

On 16th August 1931 he was one of five members of Southsea Rowing Club who set out from Whitecliff Bay, Isle of Wight, to sail to Portsmouth. Their boat was swamped by heavy seas in a gale, the worst for 20 years, and overturned. The five clung to the hull and when it drifted in sight of the Warner Lightship Forrester and one other decided to attempt to swim to it.

Before they reached it they were picked up by the collier Moygannon which searched in vain for the other three men, whose bodies were washed up some weeks later.

After leaving Haileybury he went into business at Messrs. Pink & Son in Portsmouth where he became an active member of the Rowing Club and Rugby Football Club. Forrester later moved to Oxford, played for the Exiles RFC and joined the RAFVR about April 1938 as an Airman u/t Pilot.

He married Frances Eileen Ingram in early 1939 in Southampton.



Called to full-time service at the outbreak of war, Forrester completed his flying training at 12 FTS Grantham. He was commissioned on 6th July 1940 and arrived at 6 OTU Sutton Bridge on that day for a conversion course on Hurricanes. He was posted to 605 Squadron at Drem on 3rd August. The squadron moved south to Croydon in early September.

In a late afternoon engagement on the 9th Forrester collided with a He111 of Stab/KG53 over Alton, Hampshire. The bomber lost a wing and crashed at Southfield Farm, near Chawton. Forrester was killed when his Hurricane, L2059, crashed at Southwood Farm near Shalden. He was identified by his engraved silver cigarette case.

He is buried in Odiham Cemetery, Hampshire.







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