AN event to remember a war veteran from Pinner with a memorial Spitfire and Hurricane flypast will take place at the end of this month.
The occasion, organised by Pinner resident, Paul Baderman, 41, will be attended by Harrow’s mayor and three RAF veterans including a 97-year-old squadron leader in memory of Brian Lane.
Mr Lane was born on June 18, 1917. He came to live in Pinner at the age of seven at 17 Barrow Point Avenue and was last known to be missing in action in December 1942 at the age of 25.
Mr Lane joined the Royal Air Force in 1936. By 1939, just prior to the outbreak of World War Two, he joined No. 19 Squadron at RAF Duxford, as a Spitfire pilot and commander of “a flight” (a group of Spitfires within the Squadron).
During the Dunkirk evacuation in May 1940, Mr Lane was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) for his bravery.
By September 1940, during the peak of the Battle of Britain, he was promoted to Squadron Leader of 19 Squadron.
After the Battle of Britain, Mr Lane continued flying Spitfires for 19 Squadron until June 1941, when he was posted away on a staff appointment in the Middle East.
He returned to England 15 months later in September 1942, joining a Spitfire refresher course.
Three months later, he joined 167 Squadron as a Squadron Leader in the now outdated Spitfire MkV.
He made his first operational flight with the Squadron on December 13, during which he was last seen giving chase to two German Focke-Wulf 190 fighters.
He never returned from this mission and was listed as missing in action.
Mr Lane has no known grave having most likely been shot down over the North Sea.
Mr Baderman said: “Brian Lane deserves local and national recognition as a heroic front line Spitfire pilot in the Battle of Britain.
“An ace fighter pilot and a squadron leader who showed remarkable flying and leadership skills. A man who was well respected by his peers and subordinates and a man who showed incredible courage, making the ultimate sacrifice in defence of his country.
“I have been interested in him since I first read about him and realized he was from Pinner. I have a strong interest in this part of history.
“The flypast will undoubtedly be the highlight and we’re hoping the weather will hold out for it. The other highlight will of course will be the veterans.
“It couldn’t be more important for young people to get an idea of the time this all happened. What these people did for their country, and they would never claim themselves to be heroes, was very important.”
The event will be held at 2pm on Sunday, September 25, at 17 Barrow Point Avenue, Pinner, with the flypast at 2.30pm.