Battle of Britain London Monument – Sgt. A H Deacon

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Privacy Statement The Airmen’s Stories – Sgt. A H Deacon

 

Albert Henry Deacon joined the RAF in July 1935 as an Aircrafthand. He was posted to 2 Squadron at Manston on 17th August, moved to the Home Aircraft Depot Henlow on 1st November, to 101 Squadron at Bicester on 7th July 1936, then to 90 Squadron, also at Bicester, on 1st May 1937.

On 12th October 1937 Deacon was posted to No. 2 AAS North Coates. He had earlier applied for pilot training and was selected, going to 12 E&RFTS Ayr on 15th January 1938, making his first flight in a DH82 two days later.

 

 

Deacon moved on to 10 FTS Ternhill on 21st April. After completing the course he was posted to CFS Upavon for a flying instructors course.

On 29th December 1938 Deacon went to 11 FTS Shawbury and began instructing on the Initial Training Squadron. He moved to the Advanced Training Squadron on 7th November 1939. He was posted away to 11 Group Fighter Pool St. Athan on 27th January 1940.

On 12th March 1940 Deacon joined 85 Squadron in France. On 13th May he destroyed a Me109, on the 14th destroyed a Do17 and probably a He111, on the 16th destroyed a Me109 and on the 19th two more.

The squadron was withdrawn on the 20th to Debden. On 17th August Deacon joined 111 Squadron at Croydon. Next day he claimed the destruction of a Ju88.

He also claimed the destruction of a low-flying Do17 as it was bombing Kenley. This aircraft was credited as destroyed by the ground defences.

After this engagement Deacon was fired on by the aerodrome defences as he was coming in to land at Croydon. Wounded in the legs, he baled out from 200 feet. He was admitted to hospital and then posted to RAF Kenley as non-effective sick. He did not rejoin 111 Squadron until 3rd October 1940 at Drem. He was not allowed to fly until the 26th.

Deacon was posted away from 111 for overseas service on 9th December 1940 and later flew on to the aircraft carrier HMS Furious at Liverpool in Hurricane V7798.

On 9th January 1941 Deacon flew off at Takoradi on the Gold Coast. On the 10th, in Hurricane V7770, he and five other pilots took off for the Middle East, led by a Blenheim. Deacon’s aircraft had a fuel pump fault and he took off late from Khartoum and flew the last three stages to Abu Sueir alone.

On the 29th six Hurricanes flew from Tobruk to Ta Kali, Malta, Deacon in V7771. He joined 261 Squadron there.

On 11th April 1941 Deacon destroyed a Me109 and damaged two others and on the 13th he shot down a Me109, which crashed into the sea.

On return to Ta Kali he was driven off by ground fire. He later returned to Ta Kali where his undercarriage collapsed on landing. Deacon was injured.

Taken off operational flying on 5th May 1941, he was posted to 102 MU in Egypt on 1st July. He was there until 22nd February 1942, when he went to 23 Air School, Waterkloof, South Africa, as an instructor.

Commissioned in May 1942, Deacon did not leave South Africa until late December 1945.

He stayed in the RAF on an extended commission and was released in 1948 as a Flight Lieutenant.

Deacon died in 1992.

 

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