Patrick Jameson

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Patrick Geraint Jameson
Nickname(s) Jamie
Born (1912-11-10)10 November 1912
Wellington, New Zealand
Died 1 October 1996(1996-10-01) (aged 83)
Lower Hutt, New Zealand
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Service/branch  Royal Air Force
Years of service 1936–1960
Rank Air Commodore
Service number 37813
Unit No. 46 Squadron RAF, No. 266 Squadron RAF, No. 331 Squadron RAF, No. 332 Squadron RAF
Commands held No. 266 Squadron RAF, No. 331 Squadron RAF, No. 332 Squadron RAF, RAF Schleswigland, RAF Wunsdorf
Battles/wars

Second World War

Awards Companion of the Order of the Bath
Distinguished Service Order
Distinguished Flying Cross & Bar
Mentioned in Despatches (2)
Norwegian War Cross

Air Commodore Patrick Geraint "Jamie" Jameson CB, DSO, DFC & Bar (10 November 1912 – 1 October 1996) was a New Zealander who flew with the Royal Air Force and was recognised as an flying ace.

Early life[edit]

Jameson was born on 10 November 1912 in Wellington, New Zealand and was educated in Lower Hutt before taking up employment as an assurance clerk with Colonial Mutual Life.[1] He learned to fly privately in 1933 at the Wellington Aero Club, and in January 1936 left New Zealand and travelled to England.

Military career[edit]

In England, Jameson joined the Royal Air Force (Service Number 37813[2]). He completed his flying training in January 1937 and was posted to No. 46 Squadron RAF.

At the outbreak of World War II, Jameson was a flight commander on 46 Sqn, flying Hurricanes. From April 1940 he took part in the Norwegian Campaign, In the campaign he destroyed a Junkers Ju 88 and had a share in two Dornier Do 26 flying boats.

In June it was decided to evacuate all Allied forces from Norway. On 7 June No. 46 Squadron landed its Hurricanes successfully on the flight deck of HMS Glorious, the first time Hurricanes had landed on a carrier. This was achieved by fixing sandbags under the tailplanes to shorten the landing run. Jameson led the first three aircraft in the attempt, and after making a successful landing (repeated by the other two pilots) he sent a radio signal and the rest of the squadron followed suit.

The carrier, along with the escort destroyers Ardent and Acasta, was intercepted on the way to the UK by the German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau on 8 June. All three ships were eventually sunk by shelling. Jameson and his CO, S/L "Bing" Cross found themselves on a Carley float with thirty other survivors. After three days drifting in the freezing temperatures only seven men were alive to be picked up by the Norwegian cargo vessel, Borgund. The two RAF pilots being the only surviving pilots of their unit. Of some 1,474 men on board the three ships, only 45 survived.

For his services in Norway Jameson was awarded the D.F.C. in July.

After recovery at Gleneagles Hospital in Scotland, Jameson took command of No. 266 Squadron RAF in September 1940, as part of Douglas Bader's "Big Wing". In June 1941 he was posted in as Wing Leader, Wittering Wing, before becoming Acting Station Commander, RAF Wittering in October 1941.

In August 1942 he led the Wittering Wing over Dieppe, and in December was posted to RAF North Weald to command 331 & 332 Norwegian Squadrons. After a spell on the staff at 11 Group Operational planning, in July 1944 he took command of 122 (Mustang) Wing, ending the war an ace with nine destroyed, one probable and another shared, two damaged and two destroyed on water.

In September 1945 he was Officer Commanding RAF Schleswigland and was later Officer Commanding of RAF Wunsdorf.

Jameson retired in 1960 and, after being treated for tuberculosis, returned to New Zealand.

Awards and decorations[edit]

DFC citation

Acting Flight Lieutenant Patrick Geraint JAMESON (37813). This officer led his flight with determination over completely strange country during operations in the Narvik area. He discovered and set on fire, two four-engined enemy flying boats which were concealed against the almost vertical side of Rombaksfjord, in a position most difficult to attack. No trace of them was found during a reconnaissance shortly afterwards. The following morning he destroyed a Junkers 88 over Ofotfjord. During the previous seven months he has led his flight with skill and determination, both by day and by night, often in extremely bad weather conditions. His example has been an inspiration to the rest of the squadron.

Citation for Bar to DFC:

Acting Wing Commander Patrick Geraint JAMESON, DFC (37813), Reserve of Air Force Officers, No.266 Squadron. This officer has set a high standard in the performance of his duties. He is a fine leader whose unsparing efforts have contributed to the excellent fighting spirit of his fellow pilots. Wing Commander Jameson has destroyed six enemy aircraft, one being shot down at night, and he has damaged two others. His bearing in the face of the enemy has been of the highest order.

Acting Wing Commander Patrick Geraint JAMESON, DFC (37813). Since December, 1942, this officer has led the wing on 21 sorties in which 13 enemy aircraft have been destroyed. Early in February 1943, over France, the wing was attacked by some 60 enemy fighters. During the combat, Wing Commander Jameson was attacked by 8 of the enemy aircraft but he fought his way clear and eventually led the wing back to base without loss. Some days later, whilst acting as escort to a force of bombers, the wing engaged a large formation of enemy fighters and shot down 7 of them, 2 being destroyed by Wing Commander Jameson. By his inspiring leadership and fine fighting qualities, this officer has won the complete confidence of all with whom he has flown. Wing Commander Jameson has destroyed 9 enemy aircraft, 2 of them at night.

References[edit]