The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. S Kita
Szymon Kita was born on 29th October 1916 in Jedrzejow, south of Kielce, Poland.
In November 1934 he was conscripted into the army and served until 1936 when he volunteered for the air service.
He attended a gliding school and then graduated to the RWD-8 monoplane.
In 1937 he was posted to 56 Squadron, a reconnaisance unit. He was still with the squadron when the Germans invaded in September 1939. He made some operational flights before taking his aircraft to Romania. He was interned but escaped and made his way to France. Deciding not to enlist in l'Armee de l'Air, Kita made his way to England. He arrived in England in February 1940 and enlisted in the RAFVR on 1st March 1940 at the Polish depot at Eastchurch.
On 1st June the personnel were moved to the Polish Wing at 3 School of Technical Training at Blackpool to await further postings.
Kita went to No. 1 School of Army Co-operation, Old Sarum for assessment at the 4th Polish Pilots Course, which ran from 12th - 19th August. He then went to 5 OTU Aston Down, converted to Hurricanes and joined 85 Squadron at Castle Camps on 12th September 1940.
Kita moved to 253 Squadron at Kenley on the 30th. He was shot down in combat on 1st December and he made a crash-landing at Falmer in Hurricane P3678, injured. In this action he probably shot down a Me109 but no claim was made. Kita spent seven months in hospitals and underwent three operations.
Limited by his injuries to flying below 10,000 ft., Kita was posted to 287 (AACU) Squadron, a target-towing unit.
On 9th April 1942 he went to RAF Lyneham and flew to the Middle East to join No. 1 ADU.
He returned to the UK in March 1944 and went to 25 EFTS on 10th June as a staff pilot. On 1st November Kita was posted to 16 FTS Newton for a refresher course and moved to 3 (P) AFU for advanced flying training on 20th March 1945.
Released as a Warrant Officer in March 1946, he returned to Poland and settled in Zielona Gora, Western Poland.
He died on 29th September 1980.
He was awarded the KW and Bar (gazetted 31st October 1947).