Appeal for mourners at WW2 bomber pilot's funeral

Peter Johnson Image copyright 101 Squadron Association
Image caption Peter Johnson flew specially equipped Avro Lancasters fitted with radar-jamming equipment

A friend of a World War Two bomber pilot is appealing for mourners to attend his funeral.

Peter Johnson, who flew 27 operations with 101 Squadron, died on 9 January, aged 98.

Harold Woolger said Mr Johnson had no direct family so he had taken it upon himself to organise "a great send-off".

A service will be held at St Bartholmew's Church, Eastoft, North Lincolnshire, at 11:00 GMT on Friday.

Mr Johnson served with 101 Squadron under Bomber Command. In June 1943 the squadron moved to RAF Ludford Magna in Lincolnshire from Yorkshire.

He flew specially equipped Avro Lancasters fitted with radar-jamming equipment.

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Mr Woolger said his friend - who lived alone in Eastoft after the death of his wife - would have "cringed at all the fuss" over his funeral.

However, he said it was important to pay tribute to a great man and others who served with Bomber Command.

Image copyright 101 Squadron Association
Image caption The aircraft flown by Mr Johnson dropped aluminium strips that showed as false echoes on enemy radar screens

Representatives of the 101 Squadron Association are expected to attend his funeral, along with author Kevin Wilson, who will read the eulogy.

A fundraising page has been set up to fund a memorial to the pilot in Eastoft.

Bomber Command

Image copyright IBCC
Image caption Bomber Command delivered food parcels to starving people in the Netherlands in 1945
  • Almost a million men and women served or supported Bomber Command during World War Two
  • More than 55,500 men from Bomber Command died in the skies over Europe
  • Only 30% of those who flew reached the end of the conflict without being killed, injured or taken prisoner
  • Bomber Command crews came from more than 60 different countries
  • Every member was a volunteer
  • The average age of those killed was 23
  • Carried out the world's first airborne humanitarian mission, Operation Manna, delivering in excess of 7,000 tons of food parcels in 10 days over the west of the Netherlands, where one million people were in danger of starving

Source: International Bomber Command Centre

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