Captain John Moss

Sadly John passed away on the 16th July 2013, our deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends and former colleagues.  John's service was held on 12th August 2013 at Charing Crematorium, Ashford in Kent.

John Remembered

A Tribute by Goff Bowles

Old friends and colleagues of Captain Jack Moss will be saddened to hear that he died on 16th July 2013 aged 91 after a struggle with cancer.

Johnny, as he was known, joined the RAF in 1940. He commenced flying training in 1941 and by the end of of 1942 was flying the Vickers Wellington. He then briefly converted to the Avro Manchester before moving on to join 49 Squadron at Fiskerton, Lincs., now flying the Avro Lancaster. He completed more than a dozen operations before being shot down by night fighters while en route to Nuremburg on the night of 10/11 August 1943.

He and his bomb-aimer were captured and spent two years in Stalag Luft 3. His second attempt to escape was successful and he eventually reached the American front line as it was advancing eastwards. Repatriated to England he resumed flying duties almost at once, completed the CFS course and instructed on Oxfords and Harvards until leaving the RAF in 1947.

Obtaining a civil licence his first employment was with Union of Burma Airways, ferrying an Airspeed Consul from Eastleigh to Rangoon and flying internal and external routes for the next two years. After a brief spell with Misrair he returned to the UK, was employed by Morton Air Services and found himself going back to Burma where flew the DH Dove for another two years.

In 1952 he came back to England to join BKS and then in 1954 joined Freddie Laker's Air Charter Ltd. Continuing with BUA and BCAL, he retired in 1981 having flown and been a Training Captain on the Bristol 170, DC4, VC10 and B707. On the VC10 he was the Chief Training Captain/Deputy Fleet Manager and, at the time of his retirement, Chief Training Captain on the B707 Fleet.

In 1975, John was awarded The Queen;'s Commendation for Valuable Service in The Air and, in 1979, was in command of the Royal Flight bringing H.M. The Queen back from Lusaka to London.

After leaving BCAL, John joined Sudan Airways and was involved with pilot and line training as well as re-organising the technical and training manuals for their B707's.

Returning from Sudan, he finally retired but remained very active, playing a lot of tennis and golf and retaining his interest in flying by joining a group flying a light aircraft from a farm strip near his home. This he did for about 15 years until failing eyesight became a problem. It was during this period that he was able,courtesy of the farmer who now farmed the land on the disused Fiskerton airfield, to return in his Cessna 150, 50 years to the day on which he took off in his Lancaster and was posted missing. Also present was his bomb-aimer, Len Bradfield who was the only other member of his crew who survived.

John was a very modest man - it was always difficult to get him to talk about his experiences, especially the wartime ones but he achieved a great deal in his varied and distinguished career and will greatly missed by his wife Barbara, children Penny and Douglas and his four grandchildren.

The Air Charter B170 gallery page shows Goff and John flying together in 1955 can be seen here
   Air Charter B170 to Berlin

If you would like to leave a message in remembrance please drop me a line anytime

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British Caledonian - A Tribute