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The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. A S Harker


Alan Stuart Harker was born on 16th July 1916 in Halliwell, Bolton, Lancashire and joined the RAFVR in October 1937 as an Airman u/t Pilot. He carried out his early training at 18 E&RFTS Fair Oaks.

Called up on 1st September 1939, he was posted to 10 FTS Tern Hill on 12th September for a twin-engine course on Ansons.

Afterwards Harker volunteered for night fighters and was posted to the newly-reformed 234 Squadron at Leconfield on 5th November 1939. Its Blenheims were exchanged for Spitfires in May 1940.



On 8th August Harker claimed a share in a probable Ju88, on the 18th two Me109s destroyed, on 4th September a Me110 destroyed, on the 6th two Me109s destroyed and another two probables, on the 7th a Me109 destroyed, another probably destroyed and another damaged, on the 22nd a Ju88 destroyed and on 15th October a Ju88 damaged.

He was awarded the DFM (gazetted 22nd October 1940) and commissioned in March 1941.

During a low-level attack by He111s on Warmwell on 1st April 1941, Harker was wounded in the arm.

He was shot down on a convoy patrol near Weymouth on 19th May and crash-landed in a field near Warmwell.

Harker was posted to 53 OTU Llandow on 14th August 1941 as a Flight Commander. He went to CGS Sutton Bridge on 27th June 1942 as an instructor and moved to Llanbedr in December 1943 to form a Rocket Projectile School.

He had married Jacqueline Day in early 1943.

On 5th July 1944 Harker was posted to Italy, where he served as an MT Officer with a mobile radar unit and later as an Operations Officer with US Liberator and Polish supply-dropping squadrons.

He was released from the RAF in November 1945 as a Flight Lieutenant.

Harker died on 6th August 1996 in Chichester, West Sussex

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