The Airmen's Stories - P/O J K Ross
Jack Kenneth Ross was born on 11th January 1916 in London.
He was awarded Aero Certificate 16624 at Redhill Flying Club on 4th November 1938, when his occupation was recorded as electrician.
Ross joined the RAFVR about March 1939 as an Airman u/t Pilot. Called up on 1st September, he completed his training at 10 FTS Tern Hill in early May 1940, was commissioned and arrived at 6 OTU Sutton Bridge on the 8th.
After converting to Hurricanes Ross was posted to 17 Squadron at Kenley on 25th May. He went to France with the squadron on 5th June and operated from Le Mans and Dinard before it was withdrawn on the 17th, reaching Tangmere on the 19th via Jersey.
Ross probably destroyed a Me109 on the 14th. He shared a Ju88 on 21st August and shared a Do17 on 3rd September. Ross shared another Do17 on 2nd October but had to make a forced landing when he ran out of fuel. On 6th October he shared in destroying another Do17 and on the 13th he was shot down by anti-aircraft fire during a patrol over Chatham. He baled out, wounded, and was admitted to Gravesend Hospital. His Hurricane, P3536, crashed at Rochester.
Ross claimed a Do17 destroyed on 27th October and a Ju87 destroyed and probably a second on 11th November. He shared a Ju88 on 11th July 1941.
When 134 Squadron was formed at Leconfield on 31st July from 17 Squadron personnel, Ross was promoted and went to the new unit as a Flight Commander. He served in Russia with the squadron and was awarded the DFC (gazetted 25th November 1941).
Above: Ross in Russia
After a short stay at Catterick following its return from Russia in December 1941, the squadron was posted to Eglinton, in Northern Ireland.
On 6th January 1942 Ross had to ditch his Spitfire IIa P8393 in the Irish Sea during a convoy escort. Extensive searches failed to find him.
He is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial, panel 66.
Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner