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The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. R V Forward


Ronald Victor Forward was born on 17th May 1919 in Millport, on the island of Great Cumbrae, Firth of Clyde. He was a clerk with the engineering company British Thomson-Houston when he joined the RAFVR in August 1938 as an Airman u/t Pilot. He did his pre-war flying at 12 E&RFTS Prestwick.

Called up on 1st September 1939, Forward went to 10 FTS Ternhill for 16 Course which ran from 6th November 1939 to 11th May 1940.



He joined 257 Squadron, then being reformed at Hendon, on 17th May. He and Sergeants RHB Fraser and AG Girdwood were the first three pilots to arrive.

On a dawn patrol on 9th July Forward intercepted a Do17. He fired all his ammunition but without any apparent result and made no claim. It was discovered that the enemy aircraft finally crashed near Antwerp.


Above image courtesy of the Graham Saunders Archive.


On 28th July Forward's Hurricane, P3622, was seriously damaged in combat with Me109's over the Channel off Dover and he made a crash-landing at Hawkinge, slightly injured, writing the aircraft off.

His last three flights, two of them operational sorties, were made on 12th August 1940.

Soon afterwards Forward was rested and did not return to operational flying. Commissioned in March 1944 in the Admin Branch, he was released from the RAF in 1946 as a Flying Officer.

Postwar he was a sales manager for various companies.

Forward died in 1995 in Glasgow.


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