BRICE John Cyril
947686 & 60529, Pilot Officer, Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve
Gazetted 5 August 1941, p4513
One night in April, 1941, this officer was the pilot of an aircraft which crashed on landing and burst into flames. When the aircraft came to rest it was burning fiercely. Pilot Officer Brice removed his flying helmet, harness and parachute and attempted to open the top hatch. This was jammed however, so he went forward to get the hatchet. By this time the whole perspex nose of the aircraft was on fire and the heat intense. Failing to find the hatchet, Pilot Officer Brice returned and made further efforts with the sliding roof which he managed to get open, severely burning his left hand in the attempt. After getting clear he noticed that the rear hatch was still closed and, in spite of his burns and the fact that the wind was blowing the flames over this hatch, he returned to the aircraft and tried, with his undamaged hand, to open the hatch and release the gunner. Unable to do so, Pilot Officer Brice climbed on top of the fuselage and, holding the catch with his right hand, he jumped on to the hatch and succeeded in bursting it open. Although he had received further burns to his hand and face he remained there until the gunner was clear of the aircraft. This officer displayed great coolness and bravery throughout.
Born 3 June 1919 Wellington, New Zealand