John Alan Quinton

John Alan Quinton

Birth
Brockley, London Borough of Lewisham, Greater London, England
Death 13 Aug 1951 (aged 30)
Hudswell, Richmondshire District, North Yorkshire, England
Burial Leeming, Hambleton District, North Yorkshire, England
Plot Grave Row 2, Grave Number 1
Memorial ID 87133798 · View Source
Suggest Edits

Gallant Royal Air Force Officer, John Quinton, GC, DFC,[Distinguished Flying Cross] Service number 115714, was posthumously awarded the George Cross for saving a life, in the certain knowledge that,in so doing, he would be sacrificing his own.The George Cross (GC)is the UK's highest award for bravery by a civilian or a military person where the award of the Victoria Cross (VC) is not applicable; the VC is awarded to military personnel for gallantry in the face of the enemy.In order of precedence, the George Cross is second only to the Victoria Cross. The George Cross was presented to his widow, Mrs Margaret Quinton, by HM The Queen at an investiture held on 27 February 1952, the first of the new reign.His medals are currently on display in the Lord Ashcroft Gallery at the Imperial War Museum in London.

Citation
London Gazette: 23 October 1951
"The KING has been graciously pleased to approve the posthumous award of the GEORGE CROSS to Flight-Lieutenant John Alan Quinton, D.F.C.,Royal Air Force, No. 228 Operational Conversion Unit.
On August the 13th, 1951, Flight-Lieutenant Quinton was a Navigator under instruction in a Vickers Wellington aircraft which was involved in a mid-air collision. The sole survivor from the crash was an Air Training Corps Cadet who was a passenger in the aircraft, and he has established the fact that his life was saved by a supreme act of gallantry displayed by Flight-Lieutenant Quinton, who in consequence sacrificed his own life. Both Flight-Lieutenant Quinton and the Cadet were in the rear compartment of the aircraft when the collision occurred. The force of the impact caused the aircraft to break up and, as it was plunging towards the earth out of control, Flight-Lieutenant Quinton picked up the only parachute within reach and clipped it on to the Cadet's harness. He pointed to the rip-cord and a gaping hole in the aircraft, thereby indicating that the Cadet should jump. At that moment a further portion of the aircraft was torn away and the Cadet was flung through the side of the aircraft clutching his rip-cord, which he subsequently pulled and landed safely. Flight-Lieutenant Quinton acted with superhuman speed displaying the most commendable courage and self-sacrifice, as he well knew that in giving up the only parachute within reach he was forfeiting any chance of saving his own life, Such an act of heroism and humanity ranks with the very highest traditions of the Royal Air Force, besides establishing him as a very gallant and courageous officer, who, by his action, displayed the most conspicuous heroism." On the 60th Anniversary of the accident, a plaque was unveiled in Hudswell, North Yorkshire near the actual crash site. The memorial commemorates the seven Airmen and one cadet who died in the crash as well as the story of the single cadet who survived and who, as at March 2012, lives in Australia.In his youth, he had been a keen Boy Scout and joined the 186 North London Scout Troop which met in the Church Hall of the Whetstone Congregational Church and where there is a memorial to him.He saw service in WWII with the Royal Air Force as a navigator in night-fighters and received a commission in January 1942. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) in 1944 whilst flying Mosquitos with No. 604 Squadron. Following promotion to Squadron Leader, he served in India and the Far East and, uniquely for a navigator, became a flight commander.His name is recorded on the Armed Forces Memorial and on the Roll of Honour.
Deaths Sep 1951 QUINTON John A 30 Richmond 1b 615


Advertisement

Plan a visit to John Quinton?

Advertisement

Advertisement

  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: geoffrey gillon
  • Added: 21 Mar 2012
  • Find A Grave Memorial 87133798
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for John Alan Quinton (2 Feb 1921–13 Aug 1951), Find A Grave Memorial no. 87133798, citing St John the Baptist Churchyard, Leeming, Hambleton District, North Yorkshire, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave (contributor 8) .