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The Airmen's Stories - AC2 J P McCaul


John Patrick McCaul was born on 4th July 1912 in Astley, near Leigh, Lancashire, the son of Patrick McCaul and Bridget McCaul (nee Smith).

He attended Holy Family RC school and after leaving he worked as a shop assistant at Danby's department store in Leigh.

McCaul joined the RAFVR in June 1940 as an Aircrafthand. He volunteered for aircrew duties and was sent on a short radar course.



He was posted to 219 Squadron at Catterick on 16th August 1940.

He was one of a number of airmen in the Battle of Britain who had been given a rudimentary course on radar and then flew operationally in Blenheims, without rank or flying badge, using the early primitive Airborne Interception equipment.


Above: Air Gunners of 219 Squadron.

Standing rear: Sgt. CB Hamilton, AC1 DO Hendry, AC2 JP McCaul

Standing left: Sgt. GM Leslie

Kneeling: Sgt. L Smith, Sgt. T Le Dong




He was killed on 30th September when his Blenheim, L1261, crashed from a turn at low level during a routine night patrol. It had been detached to Acklington and the accident occurred as they were climbing out after takeoff (report below).

The pilot, Sgt. C Goodwin, and the gunner, Sgt. GE Shepperd, were also killed.

McCaul was 28.

He is buried in Leigh Cemetery, Lancashire.

Additional research and above images courtesy of Pat Paterson (niece) via Patrick McCaul (relative).









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