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Picton, Richard William

Posthumous Award of D.F.C. To Former “ Express” Reporter: The Air Ministry announces the award, posthumously of the Distinguished Flying Cross to Acting Flt. Lieut. Richard William Picton, R.A.F.V.R. elder son of Maj. C. J. and Mrs. Picton of 28 Willam Way, Letchworth.

Flt. Lieut. Picton who was reported missing after air operations over France in April this year and later presumed killed commenced his training as a journalist on the “ Hertfordshire Express” . His D.F.C, is awarded with effect from April 10.

Born at Letchworth Richard Picton was educated at St. Christopher School and joined the editorial staff of the “ Express” at Hitchin, later entering King’ s College, London, further to study journalism. While a student there he joined the R.A.F.V.R. and was commissioned in June 1943.

After qualifying as a pilot he was for some time an instructor in elementary flying. Then he was transferred to gliding, in which he became very proficient, and many glider pilots received their training from him. He expressed a desire to be given operational duties and secured a transfer to Bomber Command, flying Lancasters with No. 550 Squadron. He took part in 24 big raids including attacks on Nuremberg and Berlin.

“ This officer,” says the citation, “ has completed, as pilot captain of aircraft, many successful operations against the enemy, in the course of which he has invariably displayed high skill, fortitude and devotion to duty.” At the time of his last flight. Flt. Lieut. Picton was 24.

Hertfordshire Express 29 Dec. 1945

Biographical

Surname(s)Picton
First name(s)Richard William
Date of birth02 March 1920
Family detailsOnly son of Major and Mrs C. J. Picton of 28 William-way, Letchworth
Previous educationSt. Christopher’ s School, Letchworth.
CollegeKing's College London and/or King's College London Hospital
Dates at college1938-1939
Dept / courseJournalism
Military unitR.A.F.V.R., 550 Squadron
Service number129769
War / conflictWorld War Two (1939-1945)
Decorations / medalsD.F.C.
Citation(s)

“This officer has completed, as pilot captain of aircraft, many successful operations against the enemy, in the course of which he has invariably displayed high skill, fortitude and devotion to duty.”

Date of death11/04/1944
Age at death24
Rank at deathFlt Lt/Pilot
Cause of deathKilled on operations (Herts. Pictorial 24/12/1945)
Burial placeAchiet-Le-Petit Communal Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France
Commemoration(s)King’ s College Chapel; Letchworth War Memorial
SourcesKing’ s College London Archives; Commonwealth War Graves Commission;

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