The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. H Sharpley
Hugh Sharpley was born on 28th April 1910 in North Shields, the son of a solicitor. He was a prize winning steeplechaser and polo player.
He was living in Hanchurch, Staffordshire when he was awarded Aero Certificate 15031 at North Staffordshire Aero Club on 6th June 1937, he was then employed as an engineering assistant with the Staffordshire Potteries Water Board.
He joined the RAFVR about January 1939 as an Airman u/t Pilot. Called up on 1st September 1939, he completed his training at 10 FTS Ternhill on No. 13 Course, which ran from 9th September to 6th November 1939.
He was serving with 234 Squadron at St. Eval by 18th June 1940. He flew a sortie on 24th July, a section scramble. Sharpley flew no further sorties between 25th July and 27th September and he is known to have been non-effective sick from 8th August to 28th September. The ORB states that Sharpley was 'posted back' to 234 Squadron. No details of his whereabouts in August and September have been found.
On 15th October he shared in damaging a Ju88 and on the 19th Sharpley damaged a Ju88.
He was killed on 16th November 1940, still with 234, when he crashed into the sea off Porth, Newquay in Spitfire X4072 after taking off on an interception.
Sharpley is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial, panel 19.
Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner