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Charles John French Kydd (DFC, DSO)

Rank: Squadron Leader
Town/Village: Upminster, Essex, England
Civil Parish: Templemichael
Catholic Parish: Templemichael
Alternative Address: Longford, Ireland
Census 1901: N/A
Census 1911: N/A
Regiment/Unit: Royal Air Force, 207 Squadron
Regiment Number: 37505
Date of Death: 23-06-1941
Cause: Died of wounds
Memorial: St Laurence Church, Upminster,

Charles was born in Longford around the 15 July 1915. His father, James was a Sergeant in the R.I.C in Longford town. The family lived in Longford for a number of years. They later moved to Essex in England. Charles was schooled in Palmer's School, Greys, Essex. 

Charles entered the Royal Air Force prior to World War 2 as a pupil pilot, serving in Bomber Command from 1936; he attained the rank of Flight Commander by 1938. In World War 2 he initially served with the 61 Squadron before transferred to the 201 Squadron.

Charles was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross in May 1940 and the Distinguished Service Order in September 1940 by George VI after a successful bombing raid on a ship lift on the partially-completed Magdeburg aqueduct, a part of the Mittellandkanal. A few days previous he had also led a successful raid on the Leuna oil refinery in Germany.

On the 21 June 1941, Charles was involved with an aircraft accident during an air test at Dunston Pillar, near RAF Waddington, and was fatally injured. ironically, the height of the tower had been reduced in 1940 as it was deemed to be a risk to aircraft in nearby RAF bases. 

Parents Names: Son of James Samuel Kydd and Jeannie Agnes (née Rothwell), Upminster, Essex, U.K.
Notes: Photograph of Charles being awarded the DSO by George VI is copyright of the Imperial War Museum, © IWM CH 2028

CWGC entryCivil Record of Birth (please ensure link ends in .pdf); DFC in The London Gazette, May 1940; IWM PHOTO of George VI awarding the DSO to Charles; DSO in The London Gazette, Sept 1940 (page 5653); entry; WW2talk entry; Intl Bomber Command entry

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