A Victoria Cross well earned
Close
         
Results 1 to 4 of 4
Like Tree11Likes
  • 5 Post By Fred
  • 3 Post By Borneo
  • 2 Post By Fred
  • 1 Post By Borneo

Thread: A Victoria Cross well earned

  1. #1
    Senior Member Fred's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Turtle Wrangling the Sierras
    Posts
    18,727

    A Victoria Cross well earned

    All this talk of violence, scumbags, and service to one's country reminded me of this:

    Some heroes are more heroic than others. I rather admire Norman Jackson's sense of duty to his fellow crew members. He had put in his required 30 missions while his crew had only done 29 and had but one final mission left. Plus he just heard his wife had given birth to a son. He had very right to stay safely home yet he joined his crew for one last mission:
    Bomber Command hero 'climbed onto wing to put out fire ...
    2003 TW200 "Betty Boop"
    2006 TW200 "Nibbler", a.k.a. “Mr.Gizmo"
    Hidden Content All Things Considered I’ld Rather Be Motorcycling

  2. #2
    Senior Member Borneo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    6,368
    I imagine when he took a stroll the clanking could be heard for blocks.

    [ London Gazette, 26 October 1945 ], Raid on Schweinfurt, Germany, 26 April 1944, Sergeant Norman Jackson, 106 Squadron, RAFVR.

    In recognition of most conspicuous bravery. This airman was the flight engineer in a Lancaster bomber detailed to attack Schweinfurt on the night of 26th April 1944. Bombs were dropped successfully and the aircraft was climbing out of the target area. Suddenly it was attacked by a fighter at about 20,000 feet. The captain took evading action at once but the enemy secured many hits. A fire started near a petrol tank on the upper surface of the starboard wing, between the fuselage and the inner engine. Sergeant Jackson was thrown to the floor during the engagement. Wounds which he received from shell splinters in the right leg and shoulder were probably sustained at that time. Recovering himself, he remarked that he could deal with the fire on the wing and obtained his captain's permission to try to put out the flames.
    Pushing a hand fire-extinguisher into the top of his life-saving jacket and slipping on his parachute pack, Sergeant Jackson jettisoned the escape hatch above the pilot's head. He then started to climb out of the cockpit and back along the top of the fuselage to the starboard wing. Before he could leave the fuselage his parachute pack opened and the whole canopy and rigging lines spilled into the cockpit. Undeterred, Sergeant Jackson continued. The pilot, bomb aimer and navigator gathered the parachute together and held on to the rigging lines, paying them out as the airman crawled aft. Eventually he slipped and, falling from the fuselage to the starboard wing, grasped an air intake on the leading edge of the wing. He succeeded in clinging on but lost the extinguisher, which was blown away.

    By this time, the fire had spread rapidly and Sergeant Jackson was involved. His face, hands and clothing were severly burnt. Unable to retain his hold, he was swept through the flames and over the trailing edge of the wing, dragging his parachute behind. When last seen it was only partly inflated and was burning in a number of places.

    Realising that the fire could not be controlled, the captain gave the order to abandon aircraft. Four of the remaining members of the crew landed safely. The captain and rear gunner have not been accounted for. Sergeant Jackson was unable to control his descent and landed heavily. He sustained a broken ankle, his right eye was closed through burns and his hands were useless. These injuries, together with the wounds received earlier, reduced him to a pitiable state. At daybreak he crawled to the nearest village, where he was taken prisoner. He bore the intense pain and discomfort of the journey to Dulag Luft with magnificent fortitude. After 10 months in hospital he made a good recovery, though his hands required further treatment and are only of limited use.

    This airman's attempt to extinguish the fire and save the aircraft and crew from falling into enemy hands was an act of outstanding gallantry. To venture outside, when travelling at 200 miles an hour, at a great height and in intense cold, was an almost incredible feat. Had he succeeded in subduing the flames, there was little or no prospect of his regaining the cockpit. The spilling of his parachute and the risk of grave damage to its canopy reduced his chances of survival to a minimum. By his ready willingness to face these dangers he set an example of self-sacrifice which will ever be remembered.

    Norman Jackson was invested with his Victoria Cross by King George VI at Buckingham Palace on the 13th November 1945.
    TWilight, Mel and Ebbanflood like this.
    Twelve rules will get you through life with style.
    Hidden Content

    my blog Hidden Content

  3. #3
    Senior Member Fred's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Turtle Wrangling the Sierras
    Posts
    18,727
    I knew of Sergeant Jackson's story after reading that his Victoria Cross medal had been sold at auction some years ago; the selling of which somehow depressed me. I know families cannot always keep such important honors, yet it is as if the buying and selling of medals of valor by collectors cheapens the significance of the award. I just hope the medal is displayed with the appropriate recognition of Sergeant Jackson.
    Ebbanflood and Dryden-Tdub like this.
    2003 TW200 "Betty Boop"
    2006 TW200 "Nibbler", a.k.a. “Mr.Gizmo"
    Hidden Content All Things Considered I’ld Rather Be Motorcycling

  4. Remove Advertisements
    TW200Forum.com
    Advertisements
     

  5. #4
    Senior Member Borneo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    6,368
    Rest easy old friend. It's on display at the Imperial War Museum (one of my favorite museums of all time) in the Lord Ashcroft Gallery with full attribution to Sgt. Norman Jackson.
    Fred likes this.
    Twelve rules will get you through life with style.
    Hidden Content

    my blog Hidden Content

Sponosred Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Similar Threads

  1. Here's one way to cross a creek!
    By TW-Brian in forum Off-Topic
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 04-13-2016, 10:11 PM
  2. Cross country
    By plumbstraight in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 04-24-2015, 04:34 AM
  3. Cross yer Fingers
    By Mongol Pete in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 10-19-2013, 04:10 AM
  4. About to cross the 500 mark!
    By Rohnsman in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 11-27-2011, 08:36 PM
  5. Finding a Victoria British columbia member
    By Homeskool in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 03-10-2011, 12:37 PM