COZENS, P/O Ernest Brazier (J16010) – Distinguished Flying Cross – No.218 Squadron – Award effective 4 January 1943 as per London Gazette dated 8 January 1943 and AFRO 232/43 dated 12 February 1943. Born 23 October 1917; American in the RCAF; home in Haverford, Pennsylvania; enlisted in Hamilton, 17 December 1940. Trained at No.3 ITS (graduated 25 April 1941), No.2 EFTS (graduated 2 July 1941), and No.6 SFTS (graduated 13 September 1941 as a Sergeant). Embarked for overseas, 14 September 1941, arriving in Britain 27 September 1941. Commissioned 7 October 1942; promoted Flying Officer, 15 February 1943; promoted Flight Lieutenant, 7 December 1944; promoted Squadron Leader, 15 December 1944; repatriated to Canada, 8 May 1946; released 21 May 1946. Award presented by the King, 11 May 1943.
Pilot Officer Cozens has participated in a large number of operational sorties. One night in December 1942, he was captain of an aircraft detailed to attack a target in northwest Germany. When approaching the objective his aircraft was held in a cone of searchlights and badly damaged by anti-aircraft fire. Despite this, Pilot Officer Cozens, displaying great determination, flew on and bombed the target from a very low level. On the return journey the bomber was again hit by anti-aircraft fire and the starboard inner engine caught alight. Descending to one hundred feet a fuel tank was jettisoned and the fire extinguished. Pilot Officer Cozens then flew his aircraft safely back to base. He is an outstanding officer whose only desire is to get at grips with the enemy. His quiet determination and courage have been a fine example to other members of his crew.
I will be adding a list of operations flown by Ernest over the coming weeks.
Details via Hugh Halliday’s excellent site Honours & Awards.