Menu JTA Search

69-year-old Jew Wins Distinguished Flying Cross; Oldest Man in Raf on Active Service

Holder of the Distinguished Service Cross and the Military Cross for service in four of Britain’s wars, 69-year-old Wing Commander Lionel Cohen of the Royal Air Force has added the Distinguished Flying Cross to his decorations on the eve of his 70th birthday.

The oldest man in active service in the RAF, Cohen has been participating in continuous operations since 1940. He is a qualified aerial gunner in the Coastal Command, has made 45 operational flights and has been an RAF liaison officer with the Navy. The official citation accompanying his DFC stated; “His untiring energy and courage have set a magnificent example.”

Cohen began his military career in 1893 in the campaign against the Matebale tribe in Africa. He fought in the Boer War and in World War I. Between periods of soldiering, Cohen has been a gold miner, a prospector, a reporter, dairy farmer and stock broker.