Edward James Egan, of East Dulwich, London was born on 2nd November 1920. He was awarded Aero Certificate 16612 at the London Transport Flying Club on 26th November 1938, his occupation was recorded as 'Mechanic'. Egan joined the RAFVR about January 1939 as an Airman u/t Pilot. Called up on September 1st 1939 he completed his training and arrived at 5 OTU, Aston Down on June 10th 1940.
After he converted to Blenheims, Sgt Egan was posted to 600 Squadron on the 24th. He moved to 615 Squadron at Prestwick on August 27th and then to 501 Squadron at Kenley on September 3rd. Egan claimed a Me109 destroyed on the 15th. He was killed on the Tuesday 17th September, shot down in flames in a surprise attack by a Me109 over Ashford.
Egan had been in formation with Sgt. TG Pickering who recorded in 2002 "Egan and I shared many interests regarding music and a quiet life during off-duty periods."
They had avoided being bounced by Me109s over Ashford. After joining up again they exchanged grins and Egan gave a thumbs up. Over the radio the CO gave an order to re-form over Maidstone. At that moment they were attacked again and Egan's aircraft fell away to crash in Daniels Wood, Tuesnoad Farm, Bethersden. Egan was reported 'Missing' and his name is on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 14. He was 19 years old.
The crash-site was excavated on September 11th 1976. The pilot's remains could not be identified and he was buried as 'an unknown airman' in Brookwood Military Cemetery, with full military honours. When the site was investigated again in November 1978, evidence was found to prove positively that it was Egan's aircraft The grave marker at Brookwood was changed to include his name.
Photos and text courtesy of Battle of Britain Monument website