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The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. J Kania


Josef Kania was born on 26th September 1914 in Krupina, Czechoslovakia. Despite his nationality at the outbreak of war he was serving with the Polish Air Force. His original Czechoslovakian surname may have been Kana.

How he made his way to England is at time of writing unclear but he joined 303 Squadron at Northolt on 21st August 1940. It was realised that he needed to convert to flying Hurricanes and he went for this purpose to 6 OTU Sutton Bridge on 16th September, later rejoining 303 Squadron.


Above image courtesy of Bob Payne.


Kania was posted to 315 Squadron at Acklington at its formation on 21st January 1941. He came off operations on 22nd April and was posted to 4 Ferry Pilot Pool at Kemble. He was awarded the KW (gazetted 15th August 1941).

On 5th January 1942 Kania was posted to 1 AACU. He went to 587 Squadron on attachment on 5th June 1944.

He was released from the Air Force in 1946 as a Warrant Officer. Kania was recorded as living in Kenya and Somalia, where he worked for the UN, in the 1960s.

He died on 21st July 1994.

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