It is my very sad duty to inform you that Jack Linaker has passed away.
Jack Linaker was born on 2 June 1919 in Northants. As a teenager he was the National 10 mile time trial road cycling champion.
He joined the RAF during WW2 and was trained as an Air Gunner. He was posted to 9 Squadron, at RAF Bardney near Lincoln and became the tail gunner in a crew with his wartime best friend, and subsequent lifelong friend, Bunny Rothwell. During WW2 they were the dynamic duo and enjoyed nights out in Lincoln very much.
On 21 Dec 1944, when returning from an operational sortie, his Lancaster crash landed and Jack’s rear turret was severed from the rest of the sliding Lancaster and he was catapulted into the air and landed in a potato field, minus his flying boots, which had come off. Bunny found him, then they looked around for the rest of the crew. Sadly they found 2 of their crew dead and their pilot was missing. He had been catapulted through the cockpit roof, still attached to his seat and was found alive. Jack returned to flying a few weeks later and was promoted to Flight Sergeant, then Warrant Officer. Jack was proud that in all his missions, he never saw an enemy fighter and therefore never fired his guns at a fighter, although he did fire at search lights many times.
Jack survived the war, having been promoted to Warrant Officer and married Theresa, who pre-deceased him. They did not have children.
Jack died on 21 Oct 16 and his funeral will take place at 1200hrs on Wednesday 16 Nov 16 at Kettering Crematorium and all are welcome. If you would like to attend, please could you let Bob Sutton know? He can be contacted on the following email: firstname.lastname@example.org