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Air Commodore T H Blackham (124922)

Thomas Henry              b: 11 Jul 1922              r: 11 Jul 1977              d: 6 Apr 2003

OBE – 1 Jan 1964, DFC – 7 Apr 1944, ADC.

(RAFVR): AC2: xx xxx xxxx, LAC: xx xxx xxxx, Plt Off (P): 7 Feb 1942, Fg Off (WS) (P): 1 Oct 1942, Flt Lt (WS): 7 Feb 1944, Flt Lt: 1 Sep 1945,

(RAF): Flt Lt: 1 Feb 1949, Sqn Ldr: 1 Jul 1951, Wg Cdr: xx Dec 1958, Wg Cdr: 1 Jul 1960, Act Gp Capt: 28 Jun 1965, Gp Capt: 1 Jan 1966, Act A/Cdre: 21 Sep 1973, A/Cdre: 1 Jul 1974.

(RAFO – J Class): Gp Capt: 11 Jul 1977.

xx xxx xxxx:       U/T Pilot (1124364)

 7 Feb 1942:     Appointed to a Commission in the RAFVR

xx xxx 1942:     Attended No 1660 HCU

20 Sep 1942:    Attended Conversion Course, No 1668 HCU

xx xxx 1943:      Attended No 5 Lancaster Finishing School

13 Jan 1944:      Pilot, No 50 Sqn.

4 May 1944:    Evading

xx xxx xxxx:      POW

 1 Feb 1949:    Appointed to a Permanent Commission in the rank of Flight Lieutenant.

xx xxx xxxx:    

25 Aug 1952:    Personnel Staff Officer, HQ Flying Training Command

xx xxx xxxx:    

xx Dec 1958:    Liaison Officer, Northern Army Command.

10 Jul 1961:     CFI, No 1 FTS, RAF Linton-on-Ouse.

28 Jun 1965:    Air Adviser to UK High Commissioner for Pakistan.

 2 Dec 1968:     Officer Commanding, RAF Shawbury

xx Jul 1971:

17 Jan 1972:    Group Captain - Plans & Operations, HQ Combined Military Planning Staff (CENTO).

13 Oct 1973:    AOC, Air Cadets/Commandant, Air Training Corps.

27 Mar 1975 – 11 Jul 1977:     ADC to the Queen.

11 Jul 1977:     Regional Commandant - Wales, ATC (Ret'd).

On 3 May 1944, he was flying Lancaster, LM480 against Mailly-le-Camp when he was shot down having bombed the target, crashing at St-Mesmin.  Initially he was able to evade but was soon captured and eventually found himself in Buchenwald Concentration Camp.

 Citation for the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross.

“Flight Lieutenant Thomas Henry BLACKHAM (124922), Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve, No. 50 Squadron.

As pilot, this officer has participated in a number of sorties and has displayed outstanding determination, fearlessness and devotion to duty.  This was we'll illustrated on a recent occasion when detailed to attack Berlin. On the outward .flight the aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire and the elevators were damaged.  Soon afterwards the bomber was struck by bullets from a fighter.  The rear turret was rendered unserviceable and the oxygen installation was damaged.  The target was still 100 miles distant but Flight Lieutenant Blackham continued his mission.  On the bombing run, 3 members of his crew became unconscious through lack of oxygen.  The flight engineer successfully repaired the oxygen system and the effected members were revived. Flight Lieutenant Blackham then pressed home a determined attack and afterwards flew the damaged aircraft to base.  A few nights later, this officer again displayed praiseworthy skill and resolution in-a successful attack on Augsburg.”

(London Gazette – 7 April 1944)

This page was last updated on 06/03/24©

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