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The Airmen's Stories - F/Lt. J McC M Hughes


John McCulloch Middlemore Hughes was born at Bromsgrove, Worcestershire on 13th February 1917, the son of Percy Theodore and Emily Christabel Hughes.

He was at Haileybury College from 1930 to 1934 and entered the RAF College Cranwell in September 1935 as a Flight Cadet.

After graduation in July 1937, he joined 218 Squadron, operating Fairey Battles at Boscombe Down.

The squadron flew to France on 2nd September 1939, as part of the AASF. In the fighting in May 1940 Hughes led many bombing raids on German troops and lines of communication. In one operation he was attacked by Me109s and by skilful manoeuvring Hughes enabled his gunner to shoot one down.

In December 1939 he married Marta Louise de la Salle Walsh (1912-2002) in Romsey, Hampshire.

He was awarded the DFC (gazetted 21st June 1940).




In August 1940 Hughes, in answer to a call for pilots to replace those lost in action, volunteered for Fighter Command. On 3rd September he was posted to the Radio Servicing Flight at Biggin Hill but on the 26th he was posted to 25 Squadron at North Weald, as a Flight Commander.

In the evening of 7th December 1940 Hughes was detailed to check the blackout over Peterborough in Blenheim L1235. During the patrol the weather deteriorated and a bad storm developed. Control of the aircraft was lost and it came down near the village of Elton in Huntingdonshire (now Cambridgeshire).

Hughes and the gunner, Sgt. JR Friend, were both killed and the radar operator, Sgt. FB Blenkharn, was seriously injured.

Hughes is buried in Chilworth churchyard, Hampshire.


Above image courtesy of Katiekins57.






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