Desmond Trevor Tull
169425, Flying Officer (Pilot) Desmond Trevor Tull, Age 21
85 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Died 18 December 1944
DFC Flying Officer (Pilot) 169425, 85 Squadron, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve. Died 18/12/1944.
Born in 1923 in Culpho, Suffolk, the youngest of three children of Richard Ernest Tull and Margaret Camilla nee Church. In 1939 the family are living at 5 Beach Road East, Felixstowe with Richard working as a Steel Erector.
Desmond enlisted in late 1940. In November 1941 he was sent to California for air crew training. On the 3rd of November Desmond Tull was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross "This officer is a highly skilled and resolute pilot. He has completed a large number of sorties, many of them in bad weather and has destroyed 4 enemy aircraft at night. His example of devotion to duty has been worthy of much praise". Flying Officer Tull was the pilot on Mosquito NF.30 MV549 which took off 1945 hrs 18 Dec 1944 from Swannington for operations in the Ruhr. Adolf Breve flying a Bf110 claimed to have shot down MV549 near Dusseldorf. Both crew were killed and are buried at Reichswald Forest War Cemetery.
On the outbreak of war, the squadron moved to France as part of the Air Component of the BEF. When the German invasion came in May 1940, it gave fighter cover to the Allied armies until its bases were overrun and four remaining aircraft retired to the UK. It re-equipped and resumed operations early in June. After taking part in the first half of the Battle of Britain over southern England, the squadron moved to Yorkshire in September and in October began night fighter patrols. In November it returned south to fly night patrols but the Hurricanes lack of radar gave little chance of success. In January 1941, it began to receive Defiants but these were soon replaced by Havocs, although the Hurricanes continued to be flown until July. Mosquitoes arrived in August 1942 and in March 1943 the Squadron began flying intruder missions over France. Transferred to No. 100 Group on 1 May 1944, No. 85 flew bomber support missions, intruding over German night-fighter airfields and intercepting enemy fighters by accompanying the main bomber force.
Reichswald Forest War Cemetery
Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Distinguished Flying Cross
USA Training Manifest