Born on 6 April 1918 at Poddębice in Poland. In 1936 he joined the army as a volunteer and underwent infantry cadet officer's training in the 18th Infantry Regiment at Skierniewice. On 3 January 1937 he joined the Polish Air Force College at Dęblin in the Air Force Reserve class. He has graduated as a qualified pilot instructor and subsequently he trained pilots in Warsaw and Dęblin. His first combat posting was on 7 September 1939. After Russia invaded Poland on 17 September 1939 he left this country and via Rumania, Yugoslavia, Greece and the Mediterranean went to France. After that country collapsed, he was evacuated to Britain with other Polish airmen. He was posted for fighter pilot training at Usworth. He suffered a serious flying accident during training. Following a long recover he was qualified fit for flying again. On 1 October 1941 he was promoted to Flying Officer. He was then posted for fighter training to Grangemouth in Scotland (58 OTU). From 1 January 1942 he underwent final operational training in No. 308 (Polish) Squadron. At the beginning of February 1942 he was posted to No. 317 (Polish) Squadron as a fighter pilot. In May 1944 he was reposted to No. 309 (Polish) Squadron, and in September 1944 he was appointed a flight commander in this unit. He served with No. 309 Squadron until August 1945. Between 29 January 1942 and 25 April 1945

F/Lt Jerzy Mencel has flown 104 combat sorties (over German-held territories) and 87 operational sorties in other areas. He died on 18 August 2012


His wartime awards included


the Cross of Valour and Bar,

the Distinguished Flying Cross,



On his Mustang III, when he was served in 306 Squadron PAF.

Mr. Jerzy Mencel during his visit in Warsaw, sumer 2011

Piotr Górka © 2007