Battle of Britain London Monument – F/Lt. W J Lawson

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Privacy Statement The Airmen’s Stories – F/Lt. W J Lawson


Walter John Lawson, of Somerset, was born in 1913 and educated at Hastings Grammar School. He joined the RAF in January 1929 as an Aircraft Apprentice and passed out in December 1931 as a Fitter.

In December 1936 Lawson remustered as an Airman u/t Pilot. He was commissioned on 1st April 1940 and joined 19 Squadron. His nickname on the squadron was ‘Farmer’, as he spoke of plans to become one after the war was over.



Above: Lawson at Fowlmere, September 1940, the caption says he is wearing a Type B helmet, Mk.II goggles and a Type D constant-flow oxygen mask.


Above : Lawson pictured while on leave.


Lawson (right) with F/Sgt. GC Unwin


On 5th September Lawson was appointed a Flight Commander. On this day he got a probable Do17 and damaged a Me 109. On 9th September he claimed a Me110 destroyed, on the 11th a He111, on the 15th he probably destroyed a Do17, on the 18th shared a Ju88, on the 27th destroyed a Me109 and on 5th November he destroyed two Me109’s.

Lawson was awarded the DFC (gazetted 26th November 1940).



Above images courtesy of Trevor Lawson (nephew).


On 27th June 1941 he claimed a Me109 destroyed and another probably destroyed. Lawson was given command of 19 Squadron on 17th July.

On 28th August 1941 the squadron was escorting Blenheims on a low-level attack on shipping in Rotterdam harbour. Lawson was shot down and killed in Spitfire IIa P7995 By Me109’s of 6/JG53 15 miles off the Dutch coast.

He was 28 and is commemorated on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 28.




Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner


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