Raymond Inches Stevens, DFC
Died 19 October 1955,
aged 34.
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Mr Stevens at 31 and ... his DFC.
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On the morning of Wednesday, 19th October, 1955, Mr. Stevens, a former pupil and teacher at Morgan Academy, died with startling suddenness in the playground of Royal High School, Edinburgh, as the school was assembling for the day.

Mr. Stevens had originally intended to study classics, but in his sixth year, he turned to mathematics. He won a bursary for St. Andrews University in the Open Bursary Competition, and entered United College as an Arts undergraduate in 1941. He joined the University Air Squadron and volunteered to be called up at the end of his first year at College. When he had just turned 19, he was sent to Canada to train as a bomb aimer.
When he returned to this country he was commissioned and became a member of a Lancaster crew with No. 3 Group, Bomber Command. After sixteen raids over enemy territory with the main bomber force, the crew volunteered for Pathfinder duties. They were transferred to No. 156 Squadron which was the "crack" radar locating squadron of Pathfinder Force.

With this squadron, he flew on a further forty-two raids and on the last sixteen he was the Primary Blind Marker. This was a task which involved great skill and coolness on the part of the navigator and bomb aimer, for they had to locate the target accurately by night and illuminate it with brilliant marker flares which acted as the aiming points for the following bombers. It was no wonder that, in 1945, he was awarded the D.F.C.

On demobilisation, he resumed his studies at St. Andrews and graduated M.A. in 1948 with First Class Honours in Mathematics and Applied Mathematics. In the following year, he gained his Diploma in Education. He returned to Morgan Academy in 1949 as a Maths teacher and served here until he was appointed to a similar post at Royal High School, Edinburgh, in 1954.

Whilst he was with us, his qualities impressed colleague and pupil alike. In the classroom, he was a gifted mathematician, in the staff-room a fine companion, on the playing field a first-class sportsman.

His dry humour and innate kindness commended him to all. Yet the full measure of the man was known to comparatively few. He seldom talked of his R.A.F. service, and when he did, it was only of the lighter side; of the steady courage which had earned his decoration, there was no hint.

In the same way, an apparently casual manner concealed a vigorous and probing intellect, undeceived by cant or pretentiousness, and able to deal as efficiently with the major issues of life as with the academic problems of mathematics.

Source: School Magazine, 1956.
If you'd care to see Mr. Stevens missions record and the crews he flew with click here.

In his flight crews, Mr Stevens was the bomb aimer/second navigator. You may see a description of what their flying exeperiences were like, and a tribute to "Stevie" from his fellow navigator Stan Yule, another DFC winner, here.