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Leighton, Robert John Braidwood

Date of birth:
August 26th, 1922 (Colerain/Northern Ireland)
Date of death:
1996 (Manchester, United Kingdom)
Service number:
1023457 (NCO)/155084 (Officer)
British (1801-present, Kingdom)


Robert Leighton joined the RAF in 1939 and volunteered for aircrew duties. In February 1943 he was posted to No. 158 Squadron as a mid-upper gunner and flew on targets such as Kiel, Essen, Hamburg, Wuppertal, Koln, etc. In September he became an instructor, followed by a spell at the Pathfinder Navigation Training Unit follwed by a posting at No. 7 Squadron and flew on many more ops to various targets in Germany.
Postwar Leighton stayed in the RAF, transferring to the Equipment Branch in 1949 and went on to Reserve in 1954.
It is striking tht permission was withdrawn to retain the rank of FLight Lieutenant in the London Gazette of 29th December 1964.

? Sergeant
1 August, 1943: Pilot Officer on Probation (emergency)
1 February, 1944: Flying Officer (war sub)
1 August 1945: Flight Lieutenant (war sub)

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Second World War (1939-1945)
Flying Officer
No. 7 Squadron, Royal Air Force
Awarded on:
April 17th, 1945
“This officer in completing so far 41 operational sorties has operated on 27 occasions on this Squadron. 15 of these sorties have been as a member of a Marker Crew who have on occasion acted in the capacity of Deputy Master Bomber. Flying Officer Leighton has always displayed sustained courage and unusual initiative and in the face of strong opposition has always shown coolness and courage which is highly commendable. In a calm and quiet manner he has a fine offensive spirit in action and his calm handling of his guns has contributed in no small measure to the confidence with which the crew of which he is a member has always operated.”
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)