Pilot Officer Ray Swift, Airgunner

Pic 5

Ray with his trusty pipe.

Ray Swift was a trained Wireless Operator / Air Gunner but operated in the air gunner role. Ray arrived  on squadron in December 1943, at the time it was  based at RAF Downham Market, Norfolk.  

He flew with the Jack Coram RAAF crew in the role of mid upper gunner, undertaking his first operation on December 16th against the “Nectarines” mining area. The first 24 operations were all flown in the trusty old Short Stirling, last of which was on July 27th, a mining sortie to “Artichokes”

Conversion to the Avro Lancaster followed, the crew participating on their first Lancaster operation on August 2nd against the V1 site at Mont Candon. A further 11 operations were flown culminating on October 19th 1944 when the crew attacked Stuttgart. Ray completed a first tour of 36 operations. He is survived by his wife Pat.

I was telephoned by Pat, Ray’s wife and informed Ray had sadly passed away in August.  I had many an enjoyable chat with Ray on the telephone, always keen to help and full of stories, he will be greatly missed.