Harry G. Huckins
Harry was born November 1, 1920, in Gloucester, England. In 1939, he joined The Royal Air Force as a navigator, flying on Blenheims and Lancaster bombers throughout World War II.
Shot down over Northern France in 1940, Harry was hidden, and helped to escape by a French policeman. Having learned French in school proved to be of great benefit. Luck was with him, as he just made the last of the Dunkirk evacuation back to England. Harry was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross in 1942 for low-level bombing raids in defense of Malta.
After the war, Harry enjoyed a thirty year career as a navigator with British Airways, Qantas and The Flying Tiger Line, which he joined in 1956. Tigers was his favorite airline; he enjoyed flying with many of the original pilots from Burma / China days. In Tigers, Harry was known for his excellent navigation, sense of humor and singing (sometimes on the aircraft intercom).
When Tigers adopted Inertial Navigation in 1973, Harry's career as a navigator ended, and he entered the Real Estate profession full-time, opening his own office, Western Ranch Real Estate, in Yerington, Nevada. During the years in Yerington, Harry kept in contact with his former Tiger companions, and attended many reunions. At the same time, he recalled his war time sorties, and contributed information to Theo Boiten's WWII books, "Blenheim Strike" and "Bristol Blenheim". In these books you can see some good pictures of Harry during the war years. Book stores will order them for you and libraries are able to acquire them also.
Harry was married to his wife of 56 years, Dorothy, and had two daughters, Vivien and Heather. Vivien joined Tigers as a flight attendant in 1968, flying with them for six years before returning to a teaching career. Heather is a geologist.
Harry passed away in 1997, after a life lived to its fullest; definitely highlighted and enriched by an airline that exemplified, for him, America and the "Can-Do" spirit - Flying Tigers !Back To Memorials