TECT 2016
Alfred William Kilpatrick, “Killy” to his comrades, “Will” or “Bill” to other friends and family, was typical of the young men who volunteered to serve in the RAF. Killy was working in Dublin (although he was from Londonderry) when he saw a feature about the Hurricane in “Picture Post”. He decided that he would like to fly it and joined the RAF Volunteer Reserve. Initially offered training as an air-gunner he insisted that as a volunteer it was pilot or nothing and was accepted for pilot training. His first experience of flying the Typhoon was almost fatal! Click on “DN510” for the story.
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Killy rejoined 193 Squadron as it became operational and took part in coastal patrols, then missions across the channel to attack shipping, radar stations, gunsites and other installations in Normandy and Britanny. Eventually, in the late Spring of 1944 the squadron moved to an Advanced Landing Ground at Needs Ore Point, at the mouth of the Beaulieu river, opposite the Isle of Wight. Here 146 Wing prepared for D-Day by attacking targets all along the Normandy coast, including the radar stations that might otherwise have revealed the invasion fleet and the “NoBall” sites that were being prepared to launch V1 missiles. Once temporary airfields were established in France the 146 Wing squadrons, 193, 197, 257, 263 and 266 moved to B3 at Ste Croix-sur Mer just inland of the Gold and Juno beaches. A period of intensive operations ended for Killy on August 8th during the Battle of Mortain when he was shot down in MN535. There followed a remarkable escape adventure. Click on “MN535” to read the story
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