Victor Burnett Lewis (Served as Burnett V.I.L.)

Sergeant, 20 S.F.T.S.
Service number 903424
Died 11 Nov 1940
Buried Harare (Pioneer) Cemetery, Zimbabwe
Age 28

Victor was born on 28 December 1911 in St Giles, London to Ivan Lewis and Kate nee Goldberg. Ivan officially changed the family surname from Spieshandler to Lewis in 1922. Ivan married Kate in January 1911 and sailed to Canada alone in July where he was a mineral prospector.

Victor married Olga Herard in December 1933 in Holborn, London. Olga who was half Japanese had sailed into London with her sister in 1932 and lived at the same apartment block as Victor’s family. Victor worked as the air correspondent for the Sunday Express newspaper and in 1939 he was living with Olga at Walnut Tree Cottage in Wokingham and is listed as a journalist and enlisted in the RAF. On 21 July 1939 he qualified as a pilot at Reading Aero Club.

Victor was an under training pilot on Harvard P5964 and was killed alongside Patrick Anthony Chamier, 900818 who was also training. The cause of the crash is unknown.

Victor’s obituary in the Sunday Express
Courtesy of Teresa Robinson
Victor with his mother Katie & wife Olga. Courtesy of Teresa Robinson
1939 Register