Prevot Leon O.J.(RAF n° 84285)

Distinguished Flying Cross, Mentioned in Dispatches, Knight in the Order of the Crown, Officer in the Order of the Crown, Commander in the Order of the Crown, Knight in the Order of Leopold,
Officer in the order of Leopold, Officer's Cross in the Order of Leopold II with Palm,
Commander in the Order of Leopold II, Belgian Military Cross 2nd Class,
Belgian Croix de Guerre 1940 with 4 Palm, French Croix de Guerre 1939-1945 with Palm, La Légion d'Honneur ,
Battle of Britain Clasp to the 1939 - 1945 Star, 1939/1943 Star, France and Germany Star, Atlantic Star, Air Crew Europe Star with one Silver Rose, ...

(André Bar Collection)

Leon Prévot was born at Tours, in France on January 6th 1916. He begun his career as a pupil at Wevelgem Flying School (7/5/34) and became a sergeant pilot (31/8/35).He flew Fairey Foxes in the 1st Regiment and the 3rd Regiment. On 30th October 1937 he became an officer and was posted as a monitor at the 3rd Sqn (Deurne). In May 40 he retreated with the school to France and escaped to Great Britain aboard the David Livingstone where he arrived on August 5th 1940 (Cardiff). On 14th August,he was incorporated in the Belgian Section of the RAF (St Athan) and the freshly promoted P/O, Prévot went to the 1st Blenheim OTU at Silbath. He joined the 235 Sqn (21/9/40) of the Coastal Command at Bircham Newton where during his stay, he shot down a He-60. He then became instructor (21/10/40) at Odiham and on 1st December became Flight commander. On 23rd June 1941 he started conversion on Spitfires at the Grangemouth OTU and  was posted shortly to 123 Sqn. He joined 64 Sqn (10/8/41) where he became flight commander in September. May 4th 1942  saw his posting to 122 Sqn with the rank of Squadron Leader. He was reported missing on 30/6/42. He escaped from the Germans with the help of friends in Brussels and evaded with the "Réseau Comète" (Comet escape line) and came back to England via France and Spain. He joined the RAF depot at Uxbridge (15/10/42) where he received a DFC (30/10/42). After being  with 65 Sqn at Drem (5/11/42) he took command of the newly formed 197 Sqn (21/11/42). He was rested (14/6/43) and became Typhoon instructor. He replaced S/Ldr Boussa as Squadron Leader of 350 Squadron which was flying the Spitfire IX at Hornchurch (28/12/43). Retired from operations on March 24th 1944, he was posted at the Air Defence Headquarter where he remained there until 24/2/45, becoming chief of the Flying Wing of the RAF Belgian Training School at Snailwell. After the war, he was Liaison Officer with the Air Ministry and on June 10th, 1946 became second in command to W/Cdr Le Roy du Vivier, commander of 160 (Belgian) Wing. He took over command of the wing which was installed at Beauvechain on 24th October 1946 (formed of 349 and 350 Sqn). He had occupied many functions after March 1947 and ended his career as Operations Officer in the Air Ops Division of the AIR Cent Headquarters. Retired on 1st January 1964. He died on 28th April 1994 at Brussels.

DFC Citation of 30 October 1942:

"Has completed a large number of operational sorties both as Flight and Squadron Commander, and his skillful leadership has been a source of inspiration to his pilots. He has destroyed at least 3, and probably destroyed a further 2 enemy aircraft."

(Information kindly provided by Marc Artiges)

 
             His claims are :

08/10/1940

1 He-60 (235 Sqn)

17/05/1942

1 FW-190 (122 Sqn)

02/06/1942

1 FW-190 Probable (122 Sqn)

02/06/1942

1 FW-190 Damaged (122 Sqn)

02/06/1942

1 FW-190 Damaged (122 Sqn)

30/07/1942

1 FW-190 (122 Sqn)
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