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Jesse Julius De Willimoff

Portrait, Weekly News; 24 May 1944 - This image may be subject to copyright

Portrait, Weekly News; 24 May 1944 - This image may be subject to copyright


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Jesse Julius AWMM
  • Surname
    De Willimoff AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
    • Willi AWMM
    • J. J. AWMM
  • Service number
    • WWII NZ413038 AWMM
    • WWII 70035 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    • 13 February 1917 AWMM AWMM
    • 13 February 1917 Jayforce 14 Squadron (R21077357)
    • 13 February 1917 Jayforce 14 Squadron (R21077357)
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards
    • Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) AWMM
      11 April 1944 AWMM
      Citation: "Exemplary valour displayed by this officer in leading his section back toward enemy territory to cover a damaged allied bomber returning from Rabaul under fierce attack on 20th January 1944 was instrumental in the bomber's crew being saved. Hearing that one bomber, on fire and under sustained attack had fallen out fo formation, Acting Flight Lieutenant Willimoff took his section back and engaged the enemy to such purpose that the bomber was able to make a safe water landing from which the crew were picked up. A similar incident occured on 10th February 1944, when an allied torpedo bomber was covered against violent attack. After it had landed safely, Acting Flight Lieutenant de Willimoff and his section had to fight their way out against a numerically superior force of Japanese aircraft. This pilot has destroyed two enemy aircraft and damaged two others and in service throughout the greater part of the Solomons campaign has proved an outstanding leader." AWMM
    • Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) AWMM
      1947 AWMM
      For service leading 14 Squadron RNZAF with the British Commonwealth Occupation Force (BCOF) in Japan. AWMM
    • Air Efficiency Award AWMM
      19 June 1961 AWMM
    • War Medal 1939-1945 AWMM
    • New Zealand War Service Medal AWMM

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
  • Enlistment
    WW2 Farmer/Civilian AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment


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Prisoner of war

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  • Capture details
  • Days interned
  • Liberation date
  • Liberation Repatriation
  • POW liberation details
  • POW serial number

Medical history

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  • Medical notes

Last known rank

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Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • After the war he was awarded the MBE for his service with the occupying force in Japan.

    Commanded No. 23 (Fighter) Squadron at Emirau and Los Negros in 1944 and 1945.

    7 August 1944 - No. 23 Squadron formed at Ardmore. Squadron Leader was J.J. de Willimoff in August 1944. 15 October 1945 - No. 23 Squadron is disbanded. AWMM


About death

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  • Death
    Jul 2003 AWMM
    Age 86 AWMM
    TaurangaBay of Plenty AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
    Obituary: New Zealand Herald, 19-20 July 2003, page A27 AWMM
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name
    Roll of Honour, Tirau District 1939 - 1945, Tirau Museum, Tirau, New Zealand AWMM

Roll of Honour

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  • External links
  • References
    • Sutherland, J. (1989). Gallantry awards to New Zealanders in World War Two. Christchurch, N.Z.: Regal Medals. AWMM
      p.137 AWMM
    • Bentley, G., & Conly, M. (1987). Portrait of an Air Force: the Royal New Zealand Air Force 1937-1987. Wellington, N.Z.: Grantham House. AWMM
      p.109; p.187 AWMM
    • Rudge, C. (2003). Air-to-air : the story behind the air-to-air combat claims of the RNZAF. Lyttelton, N.Z.: Adventure Air. AWMM
      p. 315 AWMM
    • Contact (Magazine of the New Zealand Ex-Vietnam Services Association) AWMM
      No.6, p.75 AWMM
    • Hanson, C. (2001). By such deeds: honours and awards in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, 1923-1999. Christchurch, N.Z.: Volplane Press. AWMM
      p.160 AWMM
    • Cox, B. (1987). Too young to die : the story of a New Zealand fighter pilot in the Pacific war. Auckland, N.Z.: Century Hutchinson. AWMM
    • N.Z.E.F. Times AWMM
      Vol.3, No.138, p.1 AWMM
    • Martyn, E. (1998-2008). For Your Tomorrow (Vols. 1-3). Christchurch, N.Z.: Volplane Press. AWMM
    • Brocklebank, L.W. (1997). Jayforce : New Zealand and the military occupation of Japan, 1945-48. Auckland, N.Z.: Oxford University Press. AWMM
    • Jayforce Nominal Roll, Manning: No 14 Squadron (1943-1947), Archives New Zealand. AIR1 17211 (R21077357). AWMM


Command item
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DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
06 March 2017Antony BarryAuckland New ZealandResearcher

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