John Benjamin Weston was educated at Chelmsford's grammar school prior to working for Norwich Union in the town. He married in 1938 and had two children, before joining the army in 1940 and the Army Air Corps four years later. He was killed in November 1944 when his aircraft crashed at First Avenue, Chelmsford, also killing the pilot. His mother lived off Rectory Lane.
John was born in Norwich, Norfolk in 1915, the middle of three sons of Harry Stanley Weston (1882-1941) and Beatrice Lilian Weston (nee Holmes) (1882-1966). His parents had married in Norwich in 1911. The census of that year had recorded that Harry was the manager of a motor garage. John's brothers were Harry Raymond Weston (1911-1988) and Philip E. Weston (born in 1918).
John was educated at King Edward VI's Grammar School in Chelmsford where he held many of the school swimming records. After leaving school he worked as an inspector for Norwich Union Fire Insurance Society at Chelmsford.
On 30th July 1938 John married Joan Buckland Wiseman at St. Mary's Church in Broomfield. She was the elder daughter of Mrs. and the late Mr. Frank Buckland Wiseman of Paglesham House, Broomfield. Mr. Buckland was a director of the Chelmsford engineering firm Christy and Norris. The couple went on to have two daughters, born in 1938 and 1944.
John joined the army in 1940, initially with the Essex Yeomanry, and survived the Coventry and Birmingham blitzes, before joining the Army Air Corps in the summer of 1944. There he served as Lieutenant 300744 in The Glider Pilot Regiment. His brothers Harry and Philip served in the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy respectively.
John Benjamin WESTON, Lieutenant, The Glider Pilot Regiment, Army Air Corps
Killed in an aircraft crash in First Avenue, Chelmsford. Aged 29
John was killed on 29th November 1944 when around midday along with Staff Serjeant Clifford George Wormleighton when their Tiger Moth training aircraft crashed into the back garden of 33 First Avenue, Chelmsford. John was 29 years-old.
The wreckage demolished a small conservatory, damaged several panes of glass and a shed, and caused slight damage to numbers 30 and 31 First Avenue. The occupants of number 31, Mr. & Mrs. Frank Wright, were not at home at the time of the crash, though Mrs. L. Richardson from King's Road who was working in the house was cut in the arm by flying glass.
John's funeral was held at St. Mary's Church, Broomfield on 3rd December 1944 where he was buried in grave 3 at the Square of Honour. At the time of his death his widowed mother was living at Meadowside House, off Rectory Lane, Chelmsford.
John is commemorated on the Broomfield British Legion's and King Edward VI's Grammar School war memorials.
He left an estate valued at £880 1s. 1d.
John's widow remarried in 1955 and died in 1977, aged 66.