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The Airmen's Stories - F/Lt. D C Bruce


David Campbell Bruce was the son of Frederick Thompson Bruce who is recorded as being born in June 1885 in South Shields, County Durham. He emigrated to New York on 21st June 1913.

He must have moved on as David C Bruce was born in 1918 in Trinidad. He is recorded in ship's manifests as arriving in St. John, New Brunswick, Canada on 16th August 1920 then Boston, Massachusetts USA on 11th June 1923 and Bristol, England on 16th August 1925.

He joined the RAF as a candidate for a short service commission in April 1937. On 17th July he was posted to 5 FTS Sealand and after completing his training he joined 111 Squadron at Northolt.

On 8th April 1940 Bruce shared in probably destroying a He111 off Scapa Flow.

After the German offensive on 10th May 111 operated over France from the forward airfield at Hawkinge.

Over Cambrai on 18th May he shared a Hs126, on 2nd June he possibly shot down a He111 and damaged a Me109 and a Hs126,on the 6th he claimed a Me109 destroyed and probably a Hs126 and on the 11th he claimed two Me109's destroyed and a Do17.


Left to Right: Sgt. R Carnall, P/O RJW Brown, P/O JHH Copeman, F/Lt. DC Bruce, F/O PJ Simpson


Promoted to Acting Flight Lieutenant on 24th August Bruce was given command of A' Flight. Next day he claimed a Me110 destroyed and on 2nd September he shared a He111 and damaged a Me110.

Bruce was reported 'Missing' on 4th September after being shot down by Me109's. His Hurricane, R4172, is believed to have crashed into the Channel five miles east of Folkestone.

Bruce was 22. He is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 4.


Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner

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