Sergeant George Leonard Johnson was born in Lincolnshire in 1921, the sixth child of a farm foreman. On the outbreak of the Second World War he volunteered for the RAF. After completing initial training, Johnny was sent to the USA for pilot training. Failing this course, he returned to England and became an air gunner. In July 1942, he was posted to 97 Squadron, where he became a bomb-aimer. A chance meeting introduced him to Flight Lieutenant Joe McCarthy, and they were soon flying together on a number of major raids before joining 617 Squadron. Johnny went on to complete a further 19 operations with 617 Squadron before he was posted elsewhere. He remained an instructor until the end of hostilities. Post-war he served with 100 Squadron and 120 Squadron Coastal Command. After a period in the Far East and a final tour in the UK, Johnny retired as Squadron Leader in 1962. Following the death of his wife, whom he adored for over 60 years, Johnny moved to Bristol where he is supported and much loved by an extended family of three children, eight grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren.
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