The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. T H Banister
Thomas Henry Banister, of Chorlton, Manchester was born on 13th September 1914 and joined the RAF in April 1934 as an Aircrafthand, he later was trained as an Air Gunner. He joined 219 Squadron at Catterick in early August 1940.
On the 15th of the month he was flying in Blenheim L8698 with Sgt. OA Dupee when the aircraft was hit by return fire from a He111 engaged off Scarborough. Dupee was wounded in the arm.
Banister went forward, assisted Dupee from his seat and took control of the damaged aircraft. Dupee, although weak from loss of blood, directed Banister who was able to make a forced-landing with the undercarriage retracted.
For this action both men were awarded the DFM (gazetted 24th September 1940).
He married Mabel Saunders on 8th February 1941 at St. Richards Church, Chichester.
Banister was commissioned in March 1942, his subsequent service is currently undocumented but it is known that he survived the war and was released from the RAF in 1945.
He died in July 2000 in Caernarfon, Gwynedd.