Previous Lot Next Lot

Auction: 24001 - Orders, Decorations and Medals
Lot: 220

Sold by Order of a Direct Descendant

A Second World War D.F.C. group of six awarded to Wing Commander J. A. Roncoroni, Royal Air Force, who was also 'mentioned' no less than four times

Distinguished Flying Cross, G.VI.R., reverse officially dated '1944'; 1939-45 Star; Air Crew Europe Star, clasp, France and Germany; Burma Star; Defence and War Medals 1939-45, with M.I.D. oak leaf, mounted court-style as worn, good very fine (6)

D.F.C. London Gazette 22 August 1944:

'This officer has commanded the squadron with success for many months. During the period he has completed very many sorties, including numerous attacks on well defended targets in Germany; he has also completed 2 successful minelaying missions. He is a model captain, whose fine leadership, great skill and determination have been most inspiring.'

M.I.D. London Gazette 1 January 1941 1 January 1942, 1 January & 2 June 1943.

John Alan Roncoroni was born in 1915, he joined the Royal Air Force as Acting Pilot Officer on 20 January 1936, promoted to Pilot Officer on 25 November 1936 and then to Flying Officer on 25 June 1938.

His log book notes "Original Log Book lost in France. Approx times up to Sept 3rd 1939. copied from Observers log books. 57 Sqdn. B.E.F. Sept 3rd 1939 War declared:-"

Roncoroni was flying Blenheims and the Squadron moved to France on the 30th September eventually being based at Lihons having transferred from Amy. On 31 October he was shot at by French Anti-Aircraft guns near Verdun and carried out a Photo Reconnaissance over N.W. Germany on the 6 November, with a further one in the Aachen area on the 17 January 1940 and one of Osnabruck on the 26 April. He carried out Air observation Patrols on the 5, 7, 8 and 9 May at 20,000ft and his Log Book notes the German Invasion of Holland & Belgium on the 10 May.

With the German invasion the squadron is forced back moving from Lihous to Poix on the 17 May, the 18 May sees him carry out low level bombing in formations on tank concentration. They evacuate Poix later the same day moving to Abeville and then the following day evacuate from Abeville to Crecy, such was the speed of the advance they evacuate the airfield the same day returning to Lympne, Kent the same day. He appears to be then based at Hawkinge and on the 25 May carries out a visual reconnaisance of the Dunkirk ara then to Bethune and St. Ouen at 20,000ft however his Blenheim was hit 3 times by A.A. fire. On the 11 June the Squadron returns from Gatwick to Wyton and throughout the rest of June and July he carries out formation practice and bombing practice with several North Sea sweeps. He is promoted to Flight Lieutenant on 25 June 1940. He has a lucky escape on the 23 August in that he collides in mid-air with P/O Holyoke on take off, the aircraft is written off. For September and October his flying follows a similar pattern of mainly North Sea sweeps and practice bombing.

Roncoroni has his first flight on a Wellingon on the 14 November and he continues practice and Navigational Flying Tests until early February. He has an Op to Le Havre on the 4 February but alas with cloud being 10/10 no bombs are dropped. However he has much better luck with an Op to Rotterdam on the 8 February, followed by one on the 10 to Hanover and Boulogne on the 15 and finally Wilemshaven on the 18 February.

He is posted to RAF Bramcote on the 19 February 1941 and then to 23 OTU at Pershore in December 1941. He carries out a B.A.T. Course on Whitleys at 1501 BAT. FLT. Abingdon. After the course he carries out numerous roles including checking out Flying Instructors, he had amassed over 1,100 hours by August 1943.

On 3 September 1943 he goes to 1652 Conversion Unit at Marston Moor where he flies Halifax and on the 25 September is transferred to 77 Squadron based at Elvington, Yorkshire. His first Op is on the 3 October to Kassel and this is followed by one to Hannover on the 8 October, Mannheim-Ludwigshaven on the 18 and Frankfurt on the 25 October. His last Op for the year was to Frankfurt on the 20 December.

He resumes Ops to Berlin on 20 January 1944 but this for some reason is cut short as the flight time was only 1.30. He makes it to Berlin on the 15 February. In March he has an Op to Le Mans on the 7, Amiens on the 15, Gardening in the Baltic on the 22, Laon on 23 and Auloyne on 25. He has one final Op with Gardening on 3 May 1944 before the Squadron is moved to Full Sutton, and he carries out a Senior Commander's Course. He has an Op to Laon on the 22 June. From then on he carries out Daylight Ops to Noyelle-en-Chausse on 24 June, Blamville on 26 June, Donledger on 4 July, Chapelle Notre Dame on 20 July and Foret de Nieppe on 29 July, August 2, 3 and 6.

Roncoroni is then posted to India, his Log Book notes "Record of Flying in India lost. Dates Feb 1945-Oct 1945."

This Log Book resumes with flying in May 1947 on Dakotas to Malta and the Middle East. With a flight to Mombassa in late 1948. In June 1949 he goes to No.1 (P) F.R.S. Finningley and carries out training on a Harvard with two solo flights on a Spitfire. At the end of July he goes on a C.F.S Course (No.112) at Brize Norton, before moving to Little Rissington in September. In November he has three flights in a Meteor as well as a familiarisation in a Lancaster. This is followed by familiarisation on a Mosquito in December. He continues on Harvards and Prentice through until June 1951 when he then has his first flight on a Vampire which he flies on 12 occasions between the 4 and 8 June.

He transfers to Middleton St.George in June 1952 before going to 209 A.F.S. at Weston Zoyland, where he spends the remainder of his career flying Meteors with his final flight on the 17 March 1953, having totalled 1,769 flying hours. He died later that year. Sold together with the following archive comprising:

Pilot's Flying Log Book.

Box for the D.F.C. with named Buckingham Palace forwarding slip.

Pilot's Wings (2).

A set of miniatures (without clasp or oakleaf) and riband bars.

Instrument Flying Certificate from the Central Flying School and Instruction Certificate for aircraft ranging from Harvard to Meteor.

Subject to 20% VAT on Buyer’s Premium. For more information please view Terms and Conditions for Buyers.

Sold for

Starting price