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The Airmen's Stories - Sgt. O Kestler


Oldrich Kestler was born in Cizice, Czechoslovakia on 18th March 1920 and was serving in the Czech Air Force when the Germans took over the country on 15th March 1939. He escaped to Poland and joined the Czech Air Force detachment there.


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When Poland fell Kestler made his way to France and in late 1939 he joined l’Armee de l'Air. After the French collapse in June 1940, he made his way to England.

On 21st September Kestler arrived at 6 OTU Sutton Bridge from RAF Cosford and, after converting to Hurricanes, he joined 111 Squadron at Dyce on 19th October.

In early 1941 Kestler was serving with 605 Squadron. On 7th April, flying from Tern Hill in Hurricane Z2318, he collided with a Spitfire, P8315, flown by another Czech pilot, Sgt. Martinec of 24 MU. Both men were killed.

Kestler is buried in Market Drayton Cemetery, Shropshire.

He was awarded the Czech Military Cross (gazetted 15th July 1941).




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