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Air Vice - Marshal J.E. Johnnie Johnson C.B.E. D.S.O. D.F.C.
Air Vice - Marshal James Edgar " Johnnie " Johnson C.B., C.B.E., D.S.O. & Two Bars, D.F.C. & Bar ( March 9th, 1915 - January 30th, 2001 ) was born in Barrow upon Soar ( Leicestershire, England ). In 1938, he broke his collarbone playing rugby for Chingford Rugby Club ( London, England ). The injury was wrongly set and did not heal properly, which later caused him difficulty at the start of his flying career. " Johnnie " Johnson started taking flying lessons at his own expense. He twice applied to join the Auxiliary Air Force ( A.A.F. ), then the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve ( R.A.F.V.R. ), but was rejected every time. In August 1939, " Johnnie " Johnson was finally accepted by the R.A.F.V.R., and on August 7th, 1940, he received his wings. At the end of the Second World War, " Johnnie " Johnson became the R.A.F. top - scorer, credited with 34 individual victories, 7 shared victories, 3 shared probable, 10 damaged, 3 shared damaged and 1 destroyed on the ground. But it is said that the true R.A.F. top - scorer could be a South African fighter pilot, Squadron Leader Marmaduke Thomas St. John " Pat " Pattle D.F.C. & Bar ( 1914 - 1941 ), credited with 50 individual victories, 2 shared victories, 7 and 1 shared probable, 4 and 2 shared damaged and 3 destroyed on the ground ( the true figure could be higher ). ( sources : Wikipedia, Ciel de Gloire )