Path Finder Force Certificate
signed by Donald Bennett
McEgan was an outstanding airman, and was awarded the PFF badge even though he had not completed his tour
(Julian Rice)
  • 45 operation tour without a break – Main Force flew two tours, the first of 30 ops, the second of 20 ops (these tours were broken up by a posting to a non-operational unit such as a Heavy Conversion Unit, or HCU)
  • Pathfinder badge awarded on a temporary basis after 6 operations
  • Pathfinder badge awarded permanently after the completion of a tour, or in exceptional circumstances such as an outstanding airman going missing on operations. A certificate was issued, signed by Bennett. 
  • One step up in acting rank, for example a Pilot Officer would become a temporary Flying Officer – pay was increased accordingly

Note: By 1943, all operational aircrew in Bomber Command had at least Non-Commissioned Officer rank (NCO). RAF ranks for aircrew were:

Flight Sergeant
Warrant Officer

Pilot Officer
Flying Officer
Flight Lieutenant
Squadron Leader
Wing Commander
Group Captain