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Helfer, Terence

Date of birth:
February 22nd, 1920 (London, Great Britain)
Date of death:
October 29th, 2010 (Torquay/Devon, Great Britain)
Service number:
British (1801-present, Kingdom)


Terence Helfer served with the Royal Air Force.
He was the pilot of Lockheed Hudson, FK803 "MA-N", 161 Squadron, that crashed near Maulusmühle on March 21st, 1945 during SOE Operation Benedict to Germany.

Flight Lieutenant Terence Helfer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, managed to save himself by parachute. The other crewmembers and three Belgian SOE Agents were killed. The total crew excisted of:
- Pilot, Flight Lieutenant Terence Helfer, 127041 RAFVR;
- Wireless Operator, Flying Officer Raymond Frankish Escreet, 143469 RAFVR, KIA;
- Navigator, Flying Officer Henry Scurr Johnson, 168807 RAFVR, KIA;
- Air Gunner, Flying Officer Forrest Harold Thompson, 412766 RNZAF, KIA;
- Guy José Florent Corbisier, KIA;
- Léon Ghislain de Winter, KIA;
- Jean-Jacques Morel, KIA.

After the Seocnd World War Terence Helfer received the Queen's Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air (January 1st, 1953) and the Air Force Cross (June 1st, 1953).

?: Flight Sergeant;
July 7th, 1942: Pilot Officer (emergency);
January 7th, 1943: Flying Officer on probation (war subs.);
July 7th, 1944: Flight Lieutenant (war subs.);
December 18th, 1945: Flying Officer;
July 1st, 1946: Flight Lieutenant;
July 1st, 1951: Squadron Leader;
January 1st, 1957: Wing Commander.

?: Elementary Flying Training School, Cambridge;
?: No. 218 Squadron;
?: Lysander Flying School;
?: No. 161 Squadron;
January 5th, 1960: Retirement.

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Second World War (1939-1945)
Flight Lieutenant
No. 161 Squadron, Royal Air Force
Awarded on:
June 1st, 1945
"Flight Lieutenant Heifer has completed many operational sorties and throughout has displayed the highest standard of efficiency and devotion to duty. He has undertaken many hazardous missions and on two occasions has had to bring his damaged aircraft down on the sea, being rescued after being adrift in the dinghy for some time on each occasion. Despite these experiences he has shown outstanding keenness for operational flying and has proved a most valuable asset to his squadron."
LG 37105/2792.
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)


  • Photo 1: Familie
  • Photo: Family
  • - Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 21st August 1942, Issue 35678, dated 25th August 1942
    - Second Supplement to The London Gaztte of 2nd March 1943, Issue 35927, dated 5th March 1943
    - Third Supplement to the London Gazette of 25th July 1944, Issue 36629, dated 28th July 1944
    - Fifth Supplement to The London Gazette of 29th May 1945, Issue 37105, dated 1st June 1945
    - Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 31st May 1946, Issue 37590, dated 4th June 1946
    - Third Supplement to The London Gazette of 11th October 1946, Issue 37758, dated 15th October 1946
    - Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 25th February 1947, Issue 37892, dated 28th February 1947
    - Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 26th June 1951, Issue 39271, dated 29th June 1951
    - Supplement to The London Gazette of 30th December 1952, Issue 39732, dated 1st January 1953
    - Supplement to The Londo Gazette of 26th May 1953, Issue 39863, dated 1st June 1953
    - Fifth Supplement to The London Gazette of 28th December 1956, Issue 40964, dated 1st January 1957
    - Second Supplement to The London Gazette of 22nd January 1960, Issue 41938, dated 26th January 1960
    - Free Belgians
    - Roll of Honour