Bomber Command’s only Halifax VC

Although Bomber Command pilots were awarded the bulk of aviation’s Victoria Crosses in World War Two just one went to a Halifax pilot; this is his story.

Cyril Joe Barton – ‘Cy’ to his friends and crewmates – was born in the small Suffolk village of Elveden on June 5, 1921. Aged 16 he became an apprentice engineer at the Parnall Aircraft Factory in Tolworth, Greater London and as this was a ‘reserved’ occupation he was exempt from being called up for military service. However, on April 16, 1941 – at the age of 19 – he put himself forward for the RAF Volunteer Reserves.

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