The Airmen's Stories - P/O F Hradil
Frantisek Hradil was born in Tesetice, Czechoslovakia on 21st September 1912. He was serving in the Czech Air Force when the Germans took over his country on 15th March 1939.
He later went to Poland and joined the Czech Air Force there. When Poland fell, Hradil made his way to France and enlisted in the Armee de l'Air in late 1939. After France collapsed in June 1940 he escaped to England.
After converting to Hurricanes, he joined 310 Squadron at Duxford on 28th August but was attached to 19 Squadron at Fowlmere the next day.
On 5th November 1940 Hradil was shot down in flames and killed in combat with Me109s over Canterbury. His Spitfire, P7545, crashed into the sea off Southend.
Hradil's body was recovered a week later. He is buried in Sutton Road Cemetery, Southend.