It is with great sadness that I am announcing the passing of another 417th NFS member, Earl “Sleepy” Hissett. He died on Thursday, January 10th, 2019. His funeral was held on January 12th. He is survived by his lovely wife Jo.
Earl was a member of the original 417th squadron. He was a mechanic and worked on the Beaufighter and P-61 engines. Rumor has it that he lied about his age so that he could join the war at the tender age of 16.
Earl tells a bit of his story on this video from the 2007 417th NFS reunion in Reading PA. Fittingly, he is standing in front of one of the P-61s that he worked on. In this video you will also hear the story behind his nickname “Sleepy”.
As far as I am aware, Earl was the last living member of the 417th and while his passing means the end of an era, I will do my best to continue to honor his service and those of his colleagues thru this website. Rest in Peace Sleepy.