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Squadron Leader Bulloch was most outstanding flyer of Atlantic battle

Richard Doherty


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Squadron Leader Terence Bulloch

Squadron Leader Terence Bulloch

Squadron Leader Terence Bulloch’s name on side of aircraft

Squadron Leader Terence Bulloch’s name on side of aircraft

Squadron Leader Terence Bulloch

On December 8, 1942, the U-boats of Rudel (wolfpack) Panzer were waiting to ambush the 30 merchant ships of convoy HX-217 in the north Atlantic, south of Iceland. With the U-boat captains aware of the convoy's course, it seemed that many of the merchant sailors in those 30 ships were doomed.

However, there was also a threat to the U-boats. Based at Reykjavik on Iceland was a detachment of Liberator bombers from Coastal Command's No. 120 Squadron.

The squadron's home base was Ballykelly, Co Londonderry. That grim day, in spite of difficult weather conditions, the detachment commander was on patrol to protect the convoy. That commander was Lisburn-born Terence Bulloch DFC, who had joined 120 Squadron not long after its re-forming at RAF Nutts Corner in June 1941. Having sighted the convoy, Bulloch and his crew then searched for surfaced U-boats.