Victoria_Cross_of_canada

THE

 

TO THE VICTORIA & GEORGE CROSS

COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE

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b. 1914 West Ham, London. d. 16/09/1961 Walsall, Staffordshire.

 

DATE AND PLACE OF GC ACTION: 20/09/1939 France.

 

Reginald Cubitt Graveley EGM/GC was born on 10th March 1914 in Leyton, London, the son of John Graveley and his wife Ethel (nee Cubitt). Reg, as he was known, gained employment with the London General Omnibus Company after leaving school, and was able to join the flying club, where he first learnt to fly. Having a talent for it, he joined the RAF in 1936 under the short service commission scheme. He was then posted to 88 Squadron based at Boscombe Down, Wiltshire.

 

On 20th September 1939 in the early weeks of the Second World War, he was on a bombing mission to Aachen in Germany, when his Fairey Battle bomber was shot down in flames. Although badly burned, he pulled the observer, Sergeant Everett, from the wreckage and then returned for the air gunner, Aircraftman John. However, he found him dead and unable to lift him from the cockpit. The plane crashed in France.

 

Graveley was awarded the EGM, which was exchanged for a GC (presented to him at Buckingham Palace on 23rd September 1941), and had to recuperate from his injuries in hospital for 7 months. He then became Senior Photographic Officer to the Photographic Reconnaissance Unit. He then moved to the USA to be Liaison Officer to the US Air Corps. When he relinquished his commission, he joined the Gloster Aircraft Company as a test pilot. By 1945, he had joined Brockhouse. He married Kathleen Rebecca Wolner who originally came from New Zealand. They went on to have two sons, John and Rex.

 

In 1951, Reg created his own company, Terric Studios which later became Lithograve. On 16th September 1961, Reg passed away at the young age of 47 in Walsall.

 

LOCATION OF MEDAL: RAF MUSEUM, HENDON, LONDON.

BURIAL PLACE: RYECROFT CREMATORIUM, WALSALL.

ASHES SCATTERED FROM AN AIRCRAFT.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reginald Cubitt Graveley EGM

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“¬The KING has been graciously pleased to approve of the following Awards:¬ -

 

The Medal of the Military Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, For Gallantry :¬-

 

Flying Officer Reginald Cubitt Graveley (39315), Royal Air Force.

 

This officer displayed great gallantry and a total disregard of his own safety when the aircraft of which he was the pilot was shot down by an enemy fighter in September, 1939, and crashed in flames. Though badly burned, he pulled his wounded air observer from the wreckage to a place of safety and then returned to rescue the air gunner. He found the airman dead, however, and was unable to lift him from the cockpit.”

 

11th November 1939 -

transcribed by Terry Hissey