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Flight Lieutenant Jack Stafford


Print ID: IN13


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John Harry "Jack" Stafford joined the RNZAF in 1942 at the age of 20. In November 1943, he was posted to No.486 (New Zealand) Squadron, flying ground-attack missions over France in Typhoons. In early 1944 the Squadron was re-equipped with Tempests and moved to Newchurch on the Romney Marshes, in support of the D-Day build-up.

From late June, No.486 was tasked with intercepting V1 Flying Bombs. In two months, Jack Stafford shot down eight over Southern England. He received his commission in July.

As the threat from the V1 diminished, No.486 Squadron moved back to operations over mainland Europe. On 25th December 1944, Stafford shared the destruction of an Me262 jet, on 23rd January an Me109, on 2nd February a Do217, on 22nd February another Me109 and on 12th April a FW190-D. On 15th May, 1945 he was awarded the DFC.