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The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. D J Aslin


Donald James Aslin was born on 14th March 1915.

He was awarded Aero cert 13952 on 20th June 1936 at the Bristol & Wessex Aeroplane Club. His occupation was recorded as 'Aircraft engineer apprentice'.

He joined the RAFVR in March 1939 as an Airman u/t Pilot. He was called up on 1st September 1939 and carried out his intermediate and advanced training at 5 FTS Sealand on No. 46 Course, from 1st February to 26th June 1940.



He then went to 7 OTU Hawarden and after converting to Hurricanes joined 32 Squadron at Biggin Hill on 29th July.

On 22nd August he damaged a Do17. Aslin moved to 257 Squadron at Martlesham Heath on 22nd September.

The following morning he was shot down during a patrol over the Thames Estuary and baled out, suffering from burns. His Hurricane, P2960, crashed at Grove near Eastchurch.

Initially he was treated at the sick quarters at RAF Detling, before being taken to Minster Hospital.

Aslin was later moved to the Queen Victoria Hospital at East Grinstead, where he underwent plastic surgery by Archie Mclndoe and became a Guinea Pig in the process.

Commissioned in July 1941, Aslin became an instructor at 36 SFTS in Penhold, Alberta, Canada, moving in June 1942 to 133(F) Squadron at Lethbridge, also in Alberta.

Back in the UK, he was posted to 1683 Flight at Bruntingthorpe and Market Harborough. Aslin married Joan Burkinshaw in October 1943 in Leicestershire.

He was released in 1946 as a Flight Lieutenant and became a test pilot for AW Hawksley Ltd. at Brockworth and then Napiers at Luton.

In February 1948 he was commissioned in the RAFVR.

Aslin died on 3rd July 1988.


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