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Flight Sergeant Leonard James

213935 48th Squadron Royal Air Force

Son of Company-Sergt.-Major Frank and Mrs Elizabeth James

Aged 21 years

Died 27th June 1918

Commemorated on the Arras Flying Services Memorial

Born at Rushden.
Rushden Echo, July 12th, 1918, transcribed by Greville Watson

Rushden’s Casualty List

Company-Sergt.-Major and Mrs F. James, of 49, Victoria-road, Rushden, have received official news that their second son, Flight Sergt. Leonard James, of the Royal Air Force, has been missing since June 27th.  He was 21 years of age on the day he was posted as missing.  The Squadron Officer writes to C.S.M. James, under the date July 2nd, as follows: “You have ere now received news of your son’s misfortune, but I thought you would care to know more fully what happened.  Also I can hold out a small hope which will help.  On the afternoon of June 27th your son with Lieut. Foord as pilot was flying on patrol in Bristol No. ––.  Our patrol was suddenly attacked from above by numerous enemy scouts and two Bristols were sent down in flames.  Machine No. –– and also Machine No. –– were the two unfortunate machines.  The fire on one Bristol went out after 20 seconds, and the pilot dived his machine down and landed on hostile territory.  Which of these two Bristols it was which landed we cannot possibly say until some word comes through a neutral country from Germany about these machines.  Should any news come to us I will write to you immediately and if you get any word would you please let me know?”  The missing N.C.O. joined the Colours in May, 1916, and went to France last Christmas.  Up to the time of enlistment he was employed by Messrs. James Hyde, Ltd., boot manufacturers, Rushden.  He was home on leave six weeks ago.  For some years he was an enthusiastic member of the 1st Rushden Troop of Boy Scouts, and held the King’s Scout badge.  At the time of enlistment he was Assistant Scoutmaster.  Even in his boyhood’s days and prior to the war he was greatly interested in aviation, and his parents have several model aeroplanes which he constructed.

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