Orders, Decorations, Medals and Militaria (30 March 2011)

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Date of Auction: 30th March 2011

Sold for £5,500

Estimate: £5,000 - £6,000

Family Group:

An excessively rare Great War D.F.C., D.S.M. group of four awarded to 2nd Lieutenant J. McK. Young, Royal Air Force, late Royal Naval Air Service
Distinguished Flying Cross, G.V.R., unnamed as issued; Distinguished Service Medal, G.V.R. (F. 3652 J. McK. Young, Act. A.M. 1 Gr., R.N.A.S., Dunkerque, 11-12 July 1917); British War and Victory Medals, M.I.D. oak leaf (2 Lieut. J. McK. Young, R.A.F.), together with Silver War Badge, the reverse officially numbered ‘RAF 8320’ and embroidered R.A.F. uniform Wings, contact marks, generally very fine or better

The 1939-45 War Medal awarded to Sergeant G. M. Young, who, after completing a number of convoy patrols in Hurricanes of No. 615 squadron, was killed in a flying accident in June 1941
War Medal 1939-45, unnamed as issued, together with original Air Ministry condolence slip in the name of ‘Sergeant G. M. Young’, addressed lid of forwarding box, extremely fine (7) £5000-6000


D.F.C. London Gazette 3 August 1918. The original recommendation states:

‘In recognition of his skill and determination as Observer and Bomb-dropper on Handley Page machines. Since the award of his D.S.M., this officer has taken part as Observer and 2nd Pilot in 39 raids with excellent results.

On the night of 30 May 1918, with Lieutenant Russell as pilot, during the attack on La Brugeeise Works, although under heavy A.A. fire, he scored direct hits on the buildings resulting in a terrific explosion and fire. All the damage noted and reported was fully confirmed by photographs taken the following day. Two nights later, he dropped bombs on Bruges Docks, with the same pilot, under heavy A.A. fire, again scoring a direct hit on the large shed, setting it on fire.’

D.S.M. London Gazette 29 August 1917. The original recommendation states:

‘The attached reports on bomb attacks carried out on the night of 11-12 July 1917 are forwarded for transmission. These attacks were carried out with military operations and appear to have been very satisfactory. In accordance with Admiralty letter of 2 July 1917, the following officers and men are recommended for decorations ... A.M. 1 (Act.) J. McK. Young: this rating has also carried out 18 bombing attacks and 20 other patrols.’

John McKimmie Young
was born in Edinburgh in March 1896, the son of a heating engineer, and enlisted in the Royal Naval Air Service in April 1915. Posted to No. 4 Wing at Petite Synthe, with whom he won a mention in despatches (London Gazette 12 May 1917), he transferred as a Air Mechanic 1 (Gunlayer) to No. 7 Squadron, No. 5 Wing, R.N.A.S. at Couderkerque in April 1917. In the following month he flew in three bombing attacks against the seaplane base at Ostend, another against the seaplane base at Zeebrugge, and in a strike against Bruges Docks, while in June he flew on two further missions against Bruges and on a strike against St. Denis Westrem. Then in July he completed another five sorties, Ghistelles aerodrome and Ghent being among No. 7’s chosen targets, in addition to Bruges, and was awarded the D.S.M. for a raid on the night of 11th-12th.

Having then flown another mission against St. Denis Westrem in early August, Young was granted leave, but he returned to operational duty with No. 7 in the following month, when he completed no less than eight bombing missions, targets including Bruges and Zeebrugge, in addition to four strikes against the railway station and aerodrome at Thorout.

Advanced to Warrant Officer in October, he returned to the U.K. to train on Handley Page bombers and, in February 1918, was posted to No. 14 Squadron, No. 5 Wing, R.N.A.S. As cited above, he subsequently completed another 39 sorties, as Observer and 2nd Pilot, latterly, it would appear, in No. 214 Squadron, 32nd Wing, R.A.F., in which service he had been commissioned in April 1918.

A radio technician by profession after his gallant exploits in the Great War, Young died at Galashiels in November 1965.

George McGregor Young was born in 1921, the son of John McKimmie Young, and was trained as a pilot at No. 55 O.T.U. before joining No. 615 Squadron in May 1941. He subsequently completed around a dozen convoys patrols in the unit’s Hurricanes prior to being killed in a flying accident in a Magister on 5 June. He is buried in Edinburgh (Saughton) Cemetery.