Mervyn Leslie CECIL DFC

CECIL, Mervyn Leslie

Service Number: 406517
Enlisted: 6 January 1941
Last Rank: Pilot Officer
Last Unit: Not yet discovered
Born: Subiaco, Western Australia, 27 December 1919
Home Town: Subiaco, Nedlands, Western Australia
Schooling: Perth Boys School, Western Australia
Occupation: ABC Clerk
Died: Flying Accident - aircraft struck phone lines, Silchar Bengal India, 30 July 1944, aged 24 years
Cemetery: Gauhati War Cemetery, India
Plot 4. Row E. Grave 19. Local Roll of Honour- Subiaco, Gauhati War Cemetery, Gauhati, Assam, India
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Subiaco Fallen Soldiers Memorial
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World War 2 Service

3 Sep 1939: Involvement Pilot Officer, 406517
6 Jan 1941: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Aircraftman 2 (WW2), 406517
6 Jan 1941: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Pilot Officer, 406517
28 Dec 1943: Involvement Royal Australian Air Force, Warrant Officer, 406517, Air War SE Asia 1941-45, 3 Tactical Air Force. (India)
12 Jun 1944: Promoted Royal Australian Air Force, Pilot Officer, 3 Tactical Airforce (RAF) India
21 Nov 1944: Honoured Distinguished Flying Cross, Air War SE Asia 1941-45

Help us honour Mervyn Leslie Cecil's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography contributed by Graham Padget

Pilot Officer Mervyn Leslie Cecil DFC of 3 Tactical Air Force was born at Herdsman Road Subiaco in December 1919, the son of Leslie and Winifred Cecil.

He attended Perth Boys school and after leaving school joined the Australian Broadcasting Commission doing clerical work.

He joined the RAAF in January 1941 when he was 19 and trained at Pearce before going to South Africa and Rhodesia.

He was posted to Malta at the height of the blitz and at one time brought down his plane with damaged landing gear and saved his crew and the plane.

He was then posted to India to 3 Tactical Air Force where he flew many missions flying wounded servicemen from the front line.

He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. The citation states: 'courage of high order on numerous Sorties in ambulance aircraft.’

On 3 June 1947 the lieutenant governor of Western Australia presented the DFC to Mervyn’s father at Government House.

His officer commanding in a letter to Mervyn’s parents says, in part, 'always a keen and competent pilot Mervyn excelled himself in the unit. He loved flying and would go out in any weather. He has been instrumental in saving the lives of hundreds of wounded soldiers out here, flying them from under the noses of the enemy.’

Pilot Officer Mervyn Leslie Cecil DFC, service number 406517 attached to 3 Tactical Air Force RAF, was killed in action at Silchar, India on 30 June 1944. He was 24.

(biography presented by his great niece on 2008 at Kings Park plaque commemoration)


Biography contributed by David Barlow

Pilot Officer Mervyn Leslie Cecil DFC 406517 of Number 3 Tactical Air Force Communication Flight was killed when Percival Proctor LZ753 crashed near Silchar, Bengal, India

Colonel Percy Albert Tucker of the Royal Engineers was also killed