Flight Lieutenant Robert Corkill - 9 Squadron  


Flight Lieutenant Robert Corkill - RAFVR 


 Robert “Bobbie” Williams Corkill was born in Castletown, Isle of Man in 1908 and was one of five brothers who all survived the war. Reg (Armourer on Typhoons), George (Home Guard), Bill ( Aircraft Fitter) and Kenneth (pilot in 101 squadron) he married his wife Iphis on 22nd October 1934.

 He worked in charge of telegraphy at Castletown Post Office before war broke out, returning as Post Master after the war had ended. Later he was to work for the Post Office in Nigeria before retiring to the Isle of Man where he became a Justice of the Peace.

 He flew as Navigator to Flying Officer Jimmy Lyon DFC, RAAF in Lancaster W4964, ”Johnny Walker” and also with him in “The Spirit of Russia” EE136. He received was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross on the 9th January 1944 and was awarded the Oak leaf after being mentioned in dispatches.

As Observer/Navigator he served in:

8-5-1943 to 9 Squadron,Bardney

Promoted to Pilot Officer on 9-7-1943

9-1-1944 promoted to Flying Officer

7-12-1944 to 630 Squadron, East Kirby

50 Squadron, Sturgate

On 9th July 1945 he was promoted to Flight Lieutenant  and on the 2nd May 1945 with Squadron Leader Cuelenaere as pilot, he took part in Operation Exodus bringing POW’s home to England. His last operational flight was on the 5th September 1945,as Navigator to Flying Officer Tonks of 50 squadron. Theyflew to Italy as part of operation Dodge from base at Glatton, to pick up soldiers of the Eighth Army who were in holding units in Italy.

  Photos courtesy of Phil Corkill and Bruce Blanche, research by Linda Ibrom.