Battle of Britain London Monument – F/Lt. R H A Lee

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Privacy Statement The Airmen’s Stories – F/Lt. R H A Lee


Richard Hugh Antony Lee was born in London in 1917 and educated at Charterhouse School. He entered the RAF College, Cranwell in September 1935 as a Flight Cadet and graduated in July 1937.
On 1st June 1938 he joined 85 Squadron, then reforming at Debden. Lee went to France with the squadron at the outbreak of war.

He destroyed a He111 over Boulogne on 21st November 1939, 85’s first victory. Lee was awarded the DFC (gazetted 8th March 1940). On 10th May 1940 he claimed a Hs126 destroyed, shared a Ju86 and damaged a Ju88. On the 11th, after shooting down two enemy aircraft, he was himself shot down by flak and captured. Lee escaped and made his way back to his squadron.



On 22nd May 85 withdrew to Debden. Flying with 56 Squadron over Dunkirk on the 27th, Lee was shot down into the sea and was picked up after an hour in the water. He was awarded the DSO (gazetted 31st May 1940).

Back with 85 Squadron in August 1940, Lee was last seen in pursuit of an enemy formation thirty miles off the east coast on the 18th. Lee was not heard of again and is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 6. He was 23 years old.

At the time of his death Lee was an Acting Flight Lieutenant. He is believed to have destroyed at least nine enemy aircraft. His portrait was made by Cuthbert Orde (below left).




(Above image (right) courtesy of Dean Sumner).

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