211 Squadron Badge

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Personnel rolls

211 Squadron personnel rolls

Personnel strength
Squadron strength on forming at Mildenhall in the Summer of
1937 comprised 10 officers and some 50 airmen, with 12 Hawker Audax aircraft in two Flights. By the end of the year, there were 15 officer pilots and three Sergeant pilots.

Ordered to the Middle East in the Spring of 1938, the Squadron establishment was increased to cater for operations as a fully mobile unit, equipped with 18 Hawker Hind aircraft in three Flights of six, ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’. In addition to the CO and the Adjutant, there were nine officer pilots and nine airmen pilots for the three flights, plus three other ground staff officers (Equipment, Accounts and Medical): 14 officers in all. The airman and NCO strength rose to perhaps 180, including those required to man the Mechanical Transport Section.

In addition, the Squadron sailed for the Middle East with five supernumerary officers, who were to leave the Squadron on arrival in Egypt, posted to the newly established RAF Helwan Station Headquarters and other units.

Following the substantial deployment to Palestine, at the time of the Munich Crisis of late 1938 the Squadron was brought back up to strength. With three Flights of six two-seat Hinds at its disposal, personnel numbered 18 officers and 180 airmen (including nine Sergeant pilots).

In March 1940, operating with nine or occasionally twelve 3-man Blenheim Is in Egypt, the Squadron’s war establishment was set at 361 officers and airmen. In the Western Desert and Greece, then, the Squadron may have had 60 or so aircrew and 300 odd ground staff on strength.

Re-equipped with 24 Blenheim IVs for the 1942 Far East campaign, the aircrew must have numbered at least 72 and more likely 90 or more, with well over 400 ground staff, around 500 men in all.

Re-formed in India in late 1943, the Squadron was equipped with 16 or 18 2-man Beaufighters. Resuming operations over Burma from January 1944 in the long-range strike role, aircrew strength varied between 40 and 50, with some 350 groundcrew in support. Aircraft maintenance work was later undertaken by 7211 Servicing Echelon, attached to the Squadron on formation and moving with it thereafter. According to the Squadron Operations Record Book, the active formation of 7211 SE began at Chiringa on 29 March 1945 (as directed by ACSEA Formation Order 338).

The available Squadron records do not include complete lists of personnel, at any period, nor is there any simple source from which to arrive at a total count of men who served with 211 Squadron from 1939 to 1945, let alone from 1937 to 1946. The rolls that are shown here are, therefore, very much a set of partial snapshots at very particular points in the Squadron’s service.

The likelihood of being able to compile a complete roll of Squadron personnel, at any one time or over the course of the war, was thus very remote indeed. That said, the extent of the rolls did grow over time, as far as sound source material and opportunity allowed. Despite careful checking on compilation and in later additions, there may still be some errors in individual entries.

The rolls on this page are:

There are separate pages for these particularly significant rolls

Lastly, several pages include rolls relevant to a particular period or context

To search for a name on this page, try your browser’s Edit/Find on this page function. To find all occurrences of a name across the whole site, see the Site search page.

Final farewells
A roll of those 211 Squadron survivors known to have passed away since 2001. This seemed a more fitting place than the
Site updates page.




Leonard W “Abbie” Abbs

28 March 2014

615342 Abbs LW joined the RAF in 1938. From March 1940 joined the 211 Squadron Photographic Section in Egypt, an LAC. With 211 Squadron groundcrew taken captive by the Japanese on Java in March 1942, Len survived to return to civil life in the UK.

Donald Allen

January 2012

1293927 Allen DW AC1 Electrician II
Wadi Gazouza late 1941
Far East posting early 1942, Sumatra, Java.
Evacuated to Australia aboard
Tung Song March 1942.

Paul Ivor Badley

17 October 2022

Sgt Pilot 1942
Evacuated to Australia aboard
Tung Song March 1942
Later of 60 Squadron RAF 1942 to 1944
Retired RAF F/Lt Mar 1977.

William “Bill” Baird

30 January 2010

Wireless Operator/Air Gunner 1940—1942

Robert Montrose Barclay

28 May 2013

Born 1917, Launceston, Tasmania
Enlisted RAAF June 1940, Melbourne, Victoria
WOp/AG Blenheim ops course 211 Squadron, Wadi Gazouza, June—November 1941
To 45 Squadron, Western Desert, November 1941
45 Squadron, India, February 1942
DFC as F/Lt August 1945
RAAF discharge November 1945
Died 28 May 2013 aged 96, country Victoria.

Eric Bevington Smith


Observer 1940—1941

George WP Blake BEM

2 February 2002

Electrician, March 1940—1942, FEPoW 1942—1945

Lewis Aubrey Bramley

3 March 2002

Born 3rd qtr 1916. Joined RAF c 1934, service no 517660
Middle East c1936
208 Squadron, Hawker Audax, Egypt and Palestine 1936—1938
45 Squadron Bristol Blenheim, Egypt 1939
LAC WOp/AG 211 Squadron 1939—1940
Sgt RAF Seletar c1948
Fly I Must—A Story of Adventure and Travel (Priory Books 1990)

Francis JT “Rajah” Brooks DFC DFM

December 2001

Francis James Thomas Brooks born 7 December 1913
RAF Halton Apprentice September 1929 (20th Entry)
LAC Air Gunner 60 Squadron before September 1939
Cpl Observer 563947 Brooks 211 Squadron June—December 1940
Sgt Observer 211 Squadron January—May 1941
62 ops, Western Desert and Greece June 1940—May 1941
11 Squadron from June 1941
DFM London Gazette 22 August 1941
F/Sgt 1942
P/O 50467 wef 5 September 1942
F/O wef 5 March 1943
F/Lt wef 5 September 1944
180 Squadron 1944: 51 ops, Europe
DFC London Gazette 14 July 1945
170 Squadron May 1945
Retired 11 December 1946
Deceased December 2001
Lies in Mildenhall cemetery, Suffolk

Robert Foster Brown

10 January 2008

F/O RAAF Observer, December 1941 to March 1942

Frank Morton Bruckshaw

23 April 2010

Born 1922. RAF September 1940. Pilot, trained Canada, Beaufort ops. Crashed during training Northern Ireland, grounded 12 months. Beaufighter ops UK, North Africa, Greece.
 211 Sqn F/O pilot Burma late 1944. Ditched Beaufighter
KW381 27 November 1944 without injury to self or crewmate. F/Lt February 1945. Mosquito conversion May 1945. 211 Squadron S/Ldr Flight Commander April 1945—1946. Demobilised September 1946. Late husband of Doreen, deceased 5 March 2012.
Bolton School Obituary 2010

Patrick Burnett DSO DFC

27 March 2004

Pilot 1939—1940. Daily Telegraph obituary. Air of Authority bio

Harry Callison

December 2008

LAC, Cpl and Sgt Armourer, 1939—1941

Alan Carter

15 November 2003

Navigator/W 1944—1945

John “Neville” Chamberlain

October 2004

Corporal 1939—1940

George Checketts

17 October 2005

Wireless Operator/Air Gunner 1941
(with Sgt Pilot Frank Baker & Sgt Observer Bob Hay)

Gordon GNV “Chig” Chignall MBE

11 July 2004

Wireless Operator/Air Gunner 1940—1942. F/Sgt 1942.
Later of 31 Squadron, Burma.
P/O November 1942, F/O May 1943, S/Ldr November 1944. RAF Commission, P/O, Aircraft Control Branch, October 1948. Short Service Commission, F/O, Equipment Branch October 1949. Permanent commission F/Lt April 1952, S/Ldr January 1958, MBE (Military) January 1962, W/Cdr January 1963, G/Cpt July 1968.
ADC HM Queen Elizabeth II from 1 November 1972—May 1974. Retired May 1974 as Group Captain, Supply Branch.
London Gazette issues and
Blenheim Society Journal No 50 November 2004.

CFR “Nobby” Clark

30 September 2003

Observer 1940—1941

Alan T Conrad

29 January 2024

Clerk (GD) October 1941 to March 1943, 211 Squadron then 72 OTU, Wadi Gazouza and Nanyuki. Later of 230 Squadron, Ceylon.

EL Len Cooper

7 July 2003

Fitter II (Engine) 1939—1942. FEPoW 1942—1945.

Ken Daft

16 December 2001


WE “Bill” Dickinson

10 July 2019

Sgt pilot 1943
F/Sgt pilot 1944
W/O pilot 1944, 1945
2002 recall of ops: Ch 24 Memorable Sorties in Burma
G Pitchfork Beaufighter Boys (Grub Street 2019)

Donald Donaldson-Davidson

26 April 2011

RAFVR 1941 aged 18.
F/Sgt Nav/W 1045219 ‘A’ Flight to P/O JM Copeland RCAF J86611, 211 Squadron November and
December 1944.
F/Sgt RAF post-war.
Permanent Commission as Pilot Office November 1953.
Flying Officer November 1955.
F/Lt November 1958.
Radar weapons instructor, Lightning Conversion Unit RAF Coltishall 1959.
Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air, June 1964.
Squadron Leader January 1970.
Retired, Squadron Leader January 1972.
Deceased, Norfolk, aged 88 years 26 April 2011.
Eastern Daily Press

Ron “Mick” Dudman

27 January 2004

Fitter II (Engine) 1939—1942 ME & FE. Tung Song evacuee.
To RAE Farnborough until retirement.
Blenheim Society Journal No 49 June 2004.

George Dunbar

24 September 2016

Born in 1920, George joined the RAF in 1938 aged 17. Trained as a Fitter (Airframe) he was posted to the Middle East and by 1941 was an LAC with 211 Squadron at Wadi Gazouza. He was one of the large party of ground staff posted to the Far East in January 1942. Captured on Java in March, he survived captivity there, at Singapore and in Japan at Osaka.
Ross-shire Journal 2014
bio. The Scotsman obit 2016

James B Dunnet

3 March 2013

RAF 1939. Sgt Observer, 57 Squadron 1940, 211 Squadron October 1940 to June 1941. Later 11 Squadron and 8 Squadron.
Pilot Officer September 1942.
Retired F/Lt 1966.
Author, Blenheim Over the Balkans (Pentland 2001)

JE (Jim) Fryatt

19 July 2008

Armourer 1940—1942 ME & FE. Tung Song evacuee.

GG (Geoff) Furmage

March 2002

Born 1 September 1918, Devonport Tas.
Enlisted RAAF Hobart 24 May 1940
Middle East April 1941
211 Squadron May 1941
45 Squadron November 1941
To India with 45 Squadron February 1942
60 Squadron May 1943
S/Ldr Jul 1944
Repatriated October 1944
37 Squadron RAAF Morotai Dec 1944
Discharged July 1945, transferred to Reserve
Retired list July 1964

Philip C (Phil) Ganderton

March 2011

Born 11 December 1916
1213717 Ganderton PC, RAFVR March 1941
211 Squadron January 1942
FEPoW Java March 1942
Held Java and Moluccas (Haruku)
Repatriated November 1945
Author Far East POW Memories of Java c 2006

E “Garry” Garrad-Cole

5 January 2003

Born 21 May 1917
A/g P/O July 1937
P/O Nov 1938
Pilot 211 Squadron Dec
1939 (ex 70 Squadron).
F/O June 1940
July 1940 L1491 with LAC WB Smith and AC2 EP Doolin, held Italy.
F/Lt June 1941
F/Lt RAFO May 1943
Escaped, Italy, September 1943, home run (on liberation of Rome) June 1944.
MC February 1945
F/Lt (Permanent RAF commission) September 1945
S/Ldr RAF August 1947
CO 129 Squadron, 267 Squadron
W/Cdr January 1953
Retired, W/Cdr RAF, November 1960
Publican, The Unicorn, Somerset 1962
Author, Single to Rome (Wingate 1955).
The Times

D Golding

16 September 2019

Enlisted 1258423 AC2 20 July 1940
Sgt Observer 211 Squadron December 1941
Kota Gede evacueee, Java February 1942
Later of 232, 20, 215 Squadrons
Warrant Officer 1944
P/O (prob) 186423 31 August 1944
F/O 1 March 1944
DFC October 1945
Released 1946
Joined RAFVR as F/O 2 June 1948
F/Lt 14 Nov 1951
Inactive List 1953
Commission relinquished June 1958
Personal service

W Russell Gourd

12 February 2009

Fitter, Airframe 1944—1945, Beaufighters

MJC Haakenson

26 February 2006

RCAF Pilot 1944. FEPoW Rangoon Gaol 1944, 1945.

CN Hansford

1 April 2015

LAC & Cpl Fitter II (Airframe),
Greece, Palestine, Sudan 1940—1941

Bob Hay

September 2003

Sgt Observer 1941
(with Sgt Pilot Frank Baker, Sgt WOp/AG G

GS Hodges

22 October 2004

F/O RAAF Pilot, December 1941 to March 1942

Geoffrey L Hoyes

12 July 2003

Wireless Electrical Mechanic 1938—1940

Brian House

10 January 2010

Fitter, Engine, 1944—1945, Beaufighters


9 August 2003

RAF 1939, Sgt Observer
P/O April 1940
55 Squadron Middle East May 1940
F/O April 1941
211 Squadron June 1941
MID September 1941
72 OTU November 1941
F/Lt April 1942
148 Squadron July 1943
Repatriated June 1944
30 OTU June to November 1944
232 Squadron December 1944
242 Squadron January 1945
EANS February to May 1945
19 Staging Post, Germany May 1945
Demobilised Sep 1945
How family

George “Curly” Kearns

29 August 2011

Wireless Operator/Air gunner, Greece & Palestine 1941. Later of XI Squadron.

Ronald C Kemp

22 August 2014

Navigator/W on Beaufighter ops and later on Mosoqutos, 1945 and 1946 with Pilot ME Walters.

Norman W King

January 2016

Compass Adjuster October 1944 to March 1946

I Trevor Lawman

5 June 2021

Pilot, July 1945 to March 1946

Bob Livesey

21 March 2003

Flight Mechanic (Engine) 1940—1942
211 Squadron,
72 OTU, 211 Squadron
Kota Gede evacuee ex-Java February 1942
Later of 84 Squadron, India.

William Alexander (Bill) Maitland

25 March 2010

Born South Australia 1916
RAAF January 1941
211 Squadron 1941
Pilot Sumatra, Java 1942
Tung Song
evacuee, March 1942
Later 87 Squadron RAAF

Ronald McKnight

8 February 2014

Born Summer 1923
RAFVR enlistment February 1942
Groundcrew, India 1944, 1945

George Manderson DFC

14 December 2001

Navigator/W 1944
DFC November 1944

Lloyd George Moffat

March 2005

RCAF Pilot 1944

Anthony Montague Browne DFC

1 April 2013

Born 1923. RAF 1942. Commissioned May 1943. Flying Officer November 1943. Flight Lieutenant June 1945. Beaufighter pilot 79 OTU 1943, Palestine and Cyprus. 211 Squadron Pilot F/O late 1944, 1945
DFC October 1945
OBE 1955, CBE 1965 KCMG 2000.
Author, Long Sunset (Cassell 1995)
Daily Telegraph

RGA Moore


Groundcrew Sumatra, Java. FEPoW 1942—1945

H Morrell

Spring 2007

Navigator/W 1945 with Pilot W/O Eric Watts

PL Payne

24 July 2022

Born 1917
RAAF May 1940
Middle East 1941
211 Sqn Blenheim Ops course July-November 1941
11 Squadron November 1941-July 1943
62 Squadron 1943 to May 1944
38 Squadron RAAF August 1944 to August 1945

GA “Jimmy” Riddle

12 January 2004

George Albert Riddle Sgt Observer 1940—1942.
Later of 31 Squadron, Burma.
W/O to P/O 23 Mar 1943
Mentioned in despatches 2 Jun 1943
F/O 23 Jul 1943
F/Lt 1 Dec 1944
Brief obit:
Blenheim Society Journal No 49 June 2004.

George R “Sandy” Sanderson

September 2000

ACH/GD 1941—1942

John Gerard “JG” Sharratt

27 March 2007

Wireless Operator/Air Gunner 1939—1941

John Needham Sleight

13 July 2015

Navigator/W 1945—1946. Market Rasen Mail Obituary

Dennis A Spencer DFC

20 September 2020

211 Squadron April to December 1944, pilot GD Vardigans (dec 1981)
DFC 3 April 1945
Author Looking Backwards Over Burma (Woodfield 2009)

Sam Spicer

2 January 2010

Armourer, India
27 Squadron 1942, 211 Squadron ‘B’ Flight 1943—1945

Peter Spooner

9 September 2008

Navigator/W November 1944—December 1945

WB “Bill” Stack

December 2003

Observer 1940—1941

TD “Tom” Taylor

4 February 2004

Pilot 1944

MEG “Monty” Walters

24 July 2016

Beaufighter and Mosquito pilot 1945—1946


14 January 2009

Squadron Medical Officer 1944—1945.
S/Ldr RAFVR Jan 1944, MID June 1944, MID Jan 1946.
In later civil life, FRCS, plastic surgery and burns surgeon.
Daily Telegraph
CA Allen Knifing the Famous

E Watts

16 Dec 2013

Beaufighter and Mosquito pilot Dec 1944—1946

FTH White

2 October 2008

RCAF F/Sgt Pilot 1944

Ray “Dai” Williams

July 2001

Cpl, ACH/GD 1941. FEPoW 1942—1945

Douglas Eric Winton

31 May 2011

Pilot, Aug 1945 to March 1946

Steve Woodhouse

August 2001

Fitter II (Airframe) 1943—1945

Harry Wright

27 October 2001

W/Op/AG January—March 1942. FEPoW survivor

AB “Alfie” Wythe DFM

27 March 2007

Beaufighter and Mosquito pilot 1944—1946

“It is something to have wept as we have wept:
It is something to have done as we have done.”
The Great Minimum GK Chesterton 1874-1936

Commanding Officers 1937—1945
A roll of 211 Squadron COs either posted, acting or otherwise, in chronological order, compiled from Air Force Lists, the Operations Record Book and individual Log Books, with additional material from the London Gazette, and Flight. Of these 24 men, six did not survive the war, four of them dying in the course of duty with the Squadron.



211 Squadron command


P/O DG Boehm


24 June 1937 to
4 July 1937

Air Cadet RAAF Pt Cook January 1936
Selected for RAF SSC exchange
Senior officer in command,
June 1937
F/O 211 Squadron January 1939.
F/Lt 19 August 1940
To 84 Squadron by c September 1940
KAO 84 Squadron 1 April 1941

S/Ldr RJA Ford 16151


5 July 1937 to
28 March 1938

Born 1 July 1904
Cadet, RAF Cranwell 1924
Pilot Officer January 1925
F/O June 1926
F/Lt May 1930
14 Squadron Middle East 1933—1935
S/Ldr April 1937
CO 104 Squadron 1938
CO 99 Squadron
W/Cdr 1940
Grp Cpt 1941
Retired Grp Cpt CBE 1 July 1954
Deceased 1996

S/Ldr SH Ware 08175

Middle East

29 March 1938 to
26 February 1939

Born 12 November 1898
RFC 1918
SSC as Flying Officer 30 August 1920
F/Lt January 1926
S/Ldr April 1936
W/Cdr January 1939 RAF Helwan
(T) Grp Cpt June 1941
(T) A/Cdr January 1946
Retired A/Cdr 15 March 1948
Deceased 22 October 1982
Air of Authority

S/Ldr JWB Judge

Middle East

27 February 1939 to
23 July 1940

Born 27 Aug 1910
RAAF enlistment May 1928
Air Cadet 1 FTS Pt Cook July 1931
Selected for RAF SSC exchange July 1932
F/O March 1933, 6 Squadron Ismailia
F/Lt April 1936 4 FTS Abu Sueir
Permanent RAF commission August 1936
S/Ldr December 1938 4 FTS
202 Group July 1940
W/Cdr March 1941
MID September 1941
Grp Cpt 1944 (ws W/Cdr)
Grp Cpt 1949
Retired Grp Cpt RAF 15 November 1952
Deceased 26 September 1979
Bio and war-time

S/Ldr ARG Bax

Middle East

23 July 1940 to
9 September 1940

Born 23 March 1913
PoW 4 Sep 1940
Retired W/Cdr 10 September 1955
Deceased April 1999

S/Ldr JR Gordon–Finlayson DSO DFC

Middle East,

9 September 1940 to
mid-March 1941

Born 19 August 1914
RAF July 1935
83 Squadron June 1937
113 Squadron April 1938—September 1939
ADC to Governor of Kenya January—August 1939
211 Squadron September 1939—March 1941
OC Eastern Wing Mar 1941
Senior Operations Officer, AHQ Western Desert 1941
RAF Staff College 1942
SASO, AHQ Burma 1946
Group Captain 1 July 1951
Assistant Commandant, RAF Staff College, Bracknell 1956
Air Commodore 1 July 1958
Director-General, Personnel Services 1960
Retired AVM 4 June 1963
Deceased 3 March 1990
Air of Authority

F/Lt GD Jones DFC 37265


January 1941,
March 1941

Born 30 Dec 1916
RAF c1935
Acting P/O (probation) 16 September 1935
P/O 16 September 1936
To 211 Squadron 1 July
F/O 16 April 1938
Acting F/Lt 12 July 1939
F/Lt 16 April 1940
DFC 11 February 1941
S/Ldr (tmpy) 10 June 1941
S/Ldr (W/Cdr tmpy) 1 September 1942
W/Cdr & CO of 97 Squadron October 1942 to July 1943
Awarded DSO 27 July 1943
S/Ldr (permanent) 15 January 1948
W/Cdr (permanent) 1 July 1950
Retired Grp Cpt 8 Dec 1958

S/Ldr RJC Nedwill AFC


22 March to
26 March 1941

Born Christchurch NZ 2 June 1913
RAF SSC April 1934
25 Squadron 1935 to 1938
4 FTS Abu Sueir 1938
S/Ldr, CO Advanced Training Squadron 4 FTS Habbaniya September 1939 to March 1941
26 March 1941

S/Ldr AT Irvine 36090


March 1941 to
13 April 1941, OC

Born 1914
P/O (on probation) RAF Reserve August 1933
P/O RAF Reserve August 1934
F/O, RAF Reserve August 1935
Permanent Commisson, P/O, RAF February 1937
Flying Training School 1937
211 Squadron Aug
F/O August 1937
211 Squadron June
To SHQ Amman June 1938
F/O Adj SHQ Amman March 1939
F/Lt August 1939
F/Lt 14 Squadron to June 1940 Sudan
113 Squadron September 1940
S/Ldr March 1941
13 April 1941 L8478
MID 24 September 1941

F/Lt WP Griffin


14 April 1941

F/O Medical Branch RAF 1933
RAFO 1936
Active service RAFO c1939
211 Squadron 1940/1941
Temporary command 14 April 1941
Order of White Eagle (Yugoslavia) August 1941
S/Ldr 1942
Commission relinquished November 1943

S/Ldr KCVD Dundas DFC


14 April 1941 to
11 May 1941

Canadian, born 16 September 1916 RCAF 1936 to 1938
RAF SSC direct entry June 1938
4 FTS Abu Sueir September 1938
Pilot Officer
211 Squadron June 1939
Flying Officer October 1940
F/Lt in temporary command 211 Squadron April 1941
S/Ldr 211 Squadron Far East January 1942
KIA 10 February 1942

 F/Lt Frederick John Austin 40168

Greece, Palestine

12 May 1941 to
16 May 1941

RAF entry c1937
Acting P/O on probation 13 October 1937
P/O 16 August 1938, confirmed 16 September 1938.
47 Squadron RAF from 14 November 1938.
F/O 211 Squadron from circa December
1940, rising to F/Lt by May 1941. Left Squadron 4 June 1941 on withdrawal to Wadi Gazouza.
To 45 Squadron 17 September 1941 as F/Lt, later as S/Ldr until 23 July 1942. Transfer to Reserve of Air Force Officers wef 23 September 1941 (12 May 1944), S/Ldr RAFO 1 June 1942.
DFC 15 October 1943, 623 Squadron.

 S/Ldr Arthur Stanley Barton Blomfield DFC 37714


17 May 1941 to
18 July 1941


Acting Pilot Officer 2 FTS Digby May 1935
SSC A//P/O March 1936
P/O January 1937
F/O 5 Squadron Risalpur May 1937
F/O July 1938
F/Lt July 1940
DFC July 1941
S/Ldr RAFO September 1941
MID September 1941
CO 199 Squadron Dec 1942
KAO 7 October 1943

W/Cdr DCR Macdonald 37017


21 July 1941 to
10 November 1941
72 OTU 11 November 1941 to 5 December 1941, Chief Instructor and OC Training Wing 72 OTU 5 Dec 1941 to c 14 May 1943

Acting P/O on probation 14 September 1934
P/O 14 September 1935
4 Squadron RAF 1 September 1935 to January 1938
F/O 14 March 1937
Acting F/Lt March 1938 to August 1939
9 FTS 7 October 1938
614 Squadron AAF 10 December 1938
F/Lt 14 March 1939
S/Ldr 1 September 1940
W/Cdr 1 December 1941
52 Squadron March 1943
AFC King’s Birthday Honours 2 June 1943
DSO as Acting Grp Cpt 9 June 1944
Grp Cpt OC Mediterranean Air Transport Service December 1944
Bronze Star, US Legion of Merit 15 March 1946
Commission relinquished 23 Sep 1958
Deceased c April 2000
Decorations and bio,
repeated at
RAF Commands db

 W/Cdr RN Bateson DFC

Far East

January 1942 to
13 March 1942

Born 10 June 1912
June 1937 113 Squadron
1941 Air Staff HQ RAF Middle East
1941 113 Squadron CO
DFC January 1941
Air Staff HQ Egypt December 1941
11 Squadron CO May 1942
July 1942 RAFO
To 613 Squadron 1943
CO 613 Squadron January 1944
DSO April 1944
OC 140 Wing July 1944
DSO Bar June 1945
Permanent Commission, S/Ldr March 1946
July 1955 NATO Group Washington
April 1958 to March 1960 ADC to HM Queen Elizabeth II
SASO Fighter Cmd 1963
AVM RN Bateson CB DSO & Bar DFC retired 1 August 1967
Deceased 6 March 1986, Devon
Air of Authority
Okehampton Times

F/O Grieg


14 August to
2 October 1943 as
“subordinate commander”

Born in late 1907, of Glamorgan in Wales
Marriage to Helen, née Dupont 1938.
F/O Norman Trefor Owen Greig 113181
Enlisted RAFVR late 1941 as
Acting Pilot Officer on probation
P/O (probation) 15 November 1941
F/O (prob, war substantive) 1 October 1942.
211 Squadron RAF as Adjutant Officer, August 1943 to 1945.
Commisson relinquished 9 July 1954, as F/O retaining rank of F/Lt
To South Africa post-war.
Deceased , South Africa 18 June 1990

Acting S/Ldr JES Hill


3 October to
5 October 1943

211 Squadron 3 October 1943 to c mid-January 1944, 2 ops Jan (AIR 27/1302, 27/1303)
CO 177 Squadron from 17 January 1944 as W/Cdr (AIR 27/1117)
Shot down 5 October 1944
PoW Rangoon Gaol -
DSO 19 October 1945
W/Cdr 1 July 1955
Grp Cpt 1 Jan1961
Retired 19 April 1968

W/Cdr PE Meagher DSO DFC 34072


6 October 1943 to
18 August 1944

Born Ireland 1910
Acting P/O 4FTS Abu Sueir 23 June 1933, P/O 6 June 1934.
P/O 84 Squadron Iraq 22 June 1934.
F/O 6 March 1936
F/Lt 6 March 1938
RAF Gosport Sep 1938
FI Course CFS August—November 1938
S/Ldr (temp) London Gazette 2 January 1940.
S/Ldr 101 Squadron January 1940
OC 602 Squadron, UK Jun 1941.
W/Cdr (temp) 1941.
OC No 151 (Fighter) Operational Training Unit Risalpur 1943
To RAFO June 1944.
Group Capt 169 Wing Aug 1944
W/Cdr (war substantive) 10 December 1944 (London Gazette 9 February 1945).
Manx Air Derby race May 1947: pilot, Miles Monarch G-ASJU, unplaced.
RAF Reserve of Officers transfer to Class “A” Reserve wef 1 May 1948 as Squadron Leader (substantive), extension of service for five years from 6 June 1948
Daily Express International Air Race 16 September 1950: pilot, Proctor I G-AGWV.
RAF Reserve of Officers 5 year extension of service as S/Ldr from 6 June 1955 (London Gazette 1 July 1955).

 S/Ldr JSR Muller–Rowland 103497


19 August 1944 to
22 October 1944

Born 27 November 1921
RAFVR 29 Jul 1940
P/O 1941
45 Squadron October 1941 to November 1942,
att 60 Squadron July 1942
F/O 1942
60 Squadron November 1942 to February 1943
DFC January 1943
F/Lt July 1943
211 Squadron October 1943
Bar to DFC April 1944
DSO November 1944
Test pilot RAE 1948
Flight commander, Aerodynamics Flight RAE. 1950
Killed in
DH108 VW120 accident 15 February 1950 (and commended for Valuable Service in the Air).
Fast And Low 2021

S/Ldr HE Martineau DFC 42862 RAFO


22 October 1944 to
13 December 1944

A/g P/O 4 year SSC 7 November 1939
P/O (probation) 20 April 1940
P/O 14 August 1940
F/O 20 April 1941
F/Lt 20 April 1942
211 Squadron September 1944
Acting S/Ldr 1944
DFC May 1945
RAFO F/Lt substantive 1 November 1947
Four year extension of service RAFO wef 19 May 1950.

F/O EL Wood


13 December 1944 to
15 December 1944


S/Ldr RN Dagnall


15 December 1944 to
10 January 1945

KIA 13 January 1945

W/Cdr RCO Lovelock DFC


10 January 1945 to
21 August 1945

Born 7 April 1912, Hampstead UK
RAF SSC May 1936
204 Squadron 1937
2nd pilot, Saunders Roe A.27 London K6927 of 204 Squadron five aircraft flight to Australia, December 1937 to May 1938
S/Ldr CO 461 Squadron RAAF May 1942
CO 119 Squadron January 1943
DFC, 461 Squadron, 12 March 1943
W/Cdr appointed to RAuxAF April 1951, 622 Squadron Flight Commander
Queen’s Commendation for Valuable Service in the Air awarded December 1952 following a two engine out forced-landing of an Air Work HP Hermes IV carrying 54 troops and 6 crew to Malta on 23 July 1952, destroyed by fire but without loss of life (Flight)
Commission relinquished F/Lt R Aux AF 1 October 1953
Occasional Flight correspondent 1948 to 1955
Deceased 4th qtr 1983.

W/Cdr DL Harvey 41698


21 August 1945
to 15 March
Squadron disbanded

Born 22 September 1920
SSC as A/g P/O (prob) RAF 4 March 1939, confirmed 28 March 1940
F/O 23 September 1940
F/Lt 23 September 1941
S/Ldr 1 July 1945
S/Ldr RAF (permanent commission) 19 January 1949
W/Cdr 1 January 1957
Retired W/Cdr 3 August 1966
Deceased 25 December 2021 aged 101

Personnel rolls 1937 to 1939
These early nominal rolls, from mid 1937 to early 1939, are taken directly from the Squadron tables of the Air Force List at the dates shown. The January 1939 Air Force List was the last issue to include such details, which were excluded from war-time publication.

The entries show the date of the Air Force List, the RAF Station where the Squadron was then based, and a list of officer aircrew by rank, name and date of posting to the Squadron. In official publications like the Air Force List and the London Gazette, it was not then the custom to list airmen by name on posting or promotion, although decorations to officers and airmen alike were notified in the Gazette.

July 1937
Station: RAF Mildenhall, Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk. Group: No 3 (Bomber) Group

Squadron Leader
RJA Ford

October 1937
Station: Grantham, Lincolnshire. Group: No. 5 Bomber Group

Squadron Leader
RJA Ford (5 July 1937)

Pilot Officers
GD Jones (1July 1937)
GD Mills (28 June 1937)
JT Bouwens (28 June 1937)
GG Storey (1July 1937)
AT Irvine (7 August 1937) Squadron CO March 1941 KIA
13 April 1941
DG Boehm (24 June 1937)
DA Cameron (24 June 1937)
JH Williams (7 August 1937)
CS Kearey (30 June 1937)
JCG MacNab (30 June 1937)
GR Magill (30 June 1937)
Acting Pilot Officer DF Rixson (4 September 1937)

4 Airman Pilots

January 1938
Station: Grantham, Lincolnshire (det Aldergrove, Northern Ireland). Group: No. 5 Bomber Group

    211 Squadron personnel Aldergrove Jan 1938
    211 Squadron ‘B’ Flight detachment Aldergrove January 1938 (Guy Black collection)
    From the unknown
    Airman’s Album and fully discussed there. Front row of officer pilots: P/O GR Magill, P/O GO Mills, P/O DG Boehm, F/Lt EM Withy, P/O DA Cameron, Acting P/O RA Couchman, P/O AL Farrington. Rear row (airmen): Flight Sergeant Thorne on the far left, Corporal Barnes is sixth from the left.

Squadron Leader
RJA Ford (5 July 1937)

Flight Lieutenants
EM Withy (28 October 1937)

Pilot Officers
GD Jones (1 July 1937)
GO Mills (28 June 1937)
JT Bouwens (28 June 1937)
GG Storey (1 July 1937)
AT Irvine (7 August 1937)
DG Boehm (4 June 1937)
DA Cameron (24 June 1937)
CS Kearey (30 June 1937)
JCG MacNab (30 June 1937)
GR Magill (30 June 1937)
JH WIIliams (7 August 1937)
AL Farrington (27 November 1937)
DF Rixson (4 September 1937)
Acting Pilot Officer RA Couchman (23 October 1937)

4 Airman Pilots

Flight Sergeant Thorne
Corporal Barnes
Collison, Cox, Goodeve, Jenkins, Long, Malyon, Marshall, Martin, Waghorn, Wood.

April 1938
Station: Grantham, Lincolnshire. Group: No. 5 Bomber Group

    211 Squadron Grantham March 1938
    211 Squadron Grantham March 1938 (RAF official via Grierson collection)
    Original caption painted on the image, from Geoff Grierson’s collection. There are 84 men in all. Of the Squadron's 16 officer pilots, 15 are present. The four Sergeant pilots are also shown. The two Flight Sergeants, one Sergeant Pilot and one Corporal are Great War veterans, wearing the “Pip, Squeak and Alfred”
    ribbon set.

    Front row: Fifth from the left, P/O P/O RA Couchman, then the Australians P/O Allan Farrington, P/O DG Boehm, and P/O Bill Edwards (all three with the RAAF insignia on their cuff). The CO, one seat left of centre, is S/Ldr Richard James Alexander Ford 16151. The ribbon below his pilot’s wings may likely be the General Service Medal + Palestine Clasp awarded for service there between April 1936 and the outbreak of war. When he took command of the new Squadron, Ford had only recently returned to the UK from a tour of duty in the Middle East. With the Squadron about to be posted there, Ford relinquished command to S/Ldr SH Ware. Here Ford is flanked by F/Lt DP Barclay OC ‘A’ Flight (left) and, F/Lt EM Withy OC ‘B’ Flight (right). The fourth Australian of the Squadron, P/O DA Cameron, does not appear to be present.

    Middle row, centre, immediately beneath the Hind propeller boss: AC1 GL Hoyes, WOp badge on his upper sleeve, flanked by a Corporal (left) and another WOp (right). Two places to the left stands AC2 W Wright.

    Third from the left, back row: LAC Grierson.

    Mike Grierson sent me fine high resolution copies of this shot. Allan Farrington kept two mounted prints of it. They passed first to his widow Alison Legge and then to their son John who, with great generosity, gave one to me: it hangs today in the collection of 211 Squadron photographs on the walls of my study.

Squadron Leader
RJA Ford (5 July 1937)

Flight Lieutenants
E M Withy 28 Oct 37
D P Barclay 13 Jan 38 KIA 45 Squadron S/L 28 Apr 1941

Flying Officers
Antony Thorburn Irvine 36090 (7 Aug 1937) (Returned as Squadron Leader in 1941 to be KIA 13 April 1941
Easter Sunday raid)

Pilot Officers
Graham Danson Jones 37265 (1 July 1937) (later F/Lt, in Greece "Potato" acted as S/Ldr for several periods)
Garth Oliver Mills 37520 (28 June 1937) KIA 39 Squadron 5 May 1941
George Gerard Storey 37615 (1 July 1937) KIA 49 Squadron 17 Jun 1943
Charles Sydney Kearey 39234 (30 June 1937)
James Crawford Gibb MacNab 39235 (30 June 1937)
Graham Reese Magill 39236 (30 June 1937) NZ, on RAF SSC
John Howel Williams 39358 (7 August 1937)
Denis Fenn Rixson 39393 (4 September 1937)
Donovan Gerhard Boehm 39453 (24 June 1937) KAO 84 Squadron 1 April 1941
Richard Alan Couchman 39501 (23 October 1937)
William Henry
Edwards 40045 (8 January 1938) to 107 Squadron, DFC and PoW 12 May 1940
Alan Leonard
Farrington 40046 (27 November 1937) to 582 Squadron, S/Ldr, KIA 29 August 1944.

4 Airman Pilots

November 1938
Station: Helwan, Egypt, Middle East

211 Helwan 38bw
211 Squadron Helwan October 1938 (RAF official via Grierson collection)
In shot, 12 of the officers and 147 airmen of 211 Squadron. As a mobile unit bound for Middle East service, their strength in personnel had been somewhat increased to three Flights plus HQ Flight. Regathered at Helwan after the Palestine detachments, the Squadron was to be made up to its authorised establishment of 13 officers and 180 airmen. Here all are in No 1 dress, medals worn—hinting that this might be after presentation of the Squadron badge, on 19 October, by HE the British High Commissioner, Sir Miles Lampson.

In the centre of the first seated row, C/O and World War I veteran S/Ldr SH Ware. For some reason he does not appear in the nominal rolls of the Squadron in the Air Force Lists of the period, however, the annual Squadron rolls in the Operations Record Book show that he was appointed to command from 29 March 1938, taking up his post on 4 April. Others in the first seated row are pilots Bill Edwards (11 from the left), Couchman (11 from the right) and Allan Farrington (12 from the right). Among the airmen, Geoff Hoyes is the shortest man, centre, rear, and Geoff Grierson is standing on the right, in the last row but one. William Wright is the shortest man 14 from the right, two ranks to the rear of the CO.

From the counts in these four photos and the July 1938 Operations Record Book discussion of the Palestine detachment, the form of the Squadron at this date in the Middle East is now clear: ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ Flights, each of around 30 personnel, plus an HQ Flight of 70-odd. All except ‘A’ Flight are now recorded here.

    Egypt 1 HQ Flt 211 Sqn 02
    211 Squadron HQ Flight Helwan October 1938 (RAF official via Hoyes collection)
    The Squadron CO S/Ldr SH Ware and his HQ Flight, five officers and 69 airmen in all.
    AC1 Hoyes, WOp/Mech, centre rear. Of the officers, the CO and three others are decorated, these latter as non-pilots.

    211 Helwan B Flt 38b02
    211 Squadron ‘B’ Flight Helwan October 1938 (RAF official via Grierson collection)
    Fifth from the left in the front row is F/Lt RH Spencer, sixth from the left is P/O Couchman. Three officers and 22 airmen, including two Sergeant pilots (second from the left and third from the right in the front row). LAC
    Grierson is third from the left, back row. The airman last on the right in the middle row is a familiar face from the Airman’s Album.

    C Flight Oct 38 P00365002
    211 Squadron ‘C’ Flight, Helwan, October 1938 (RAF official via RAAFA Aviation Heritage Museum Image P003650)
    Three officers and 24 airmen. Flying Officer DG Boehm 4th from the left, seated next to a very experienced Aircraftman, his tunic much medalled. 5th from the left is the Flying Officer in command of the Flight, either F/O GD “Potato” Jones, or F/O AT Irvine (later KIA with the Squadron in Greece, on
    Easter Sunday 13 April 1941).

Squadron leader
SH Ware

Flight Lieutenants
DP Barclay (13 January 1938)
RH Spencer (5 April 1938)

Flying Officers
GD Jones (1 July 1937)
GO Mills (28 June 1937)
GG Storey (1 July 1937)
DG Boehm (4 June 1937)

Pilot Officers
AL Farrington (27 November 1937)
RH Couchman (23 October 1937)
WH Edwards (8 January 1938)
Acting Pilot Officer CPR Collier (10 September 1938)

December 1938
Station: Helwan, Egypt, Middle East

Flight Lieutenants
DP Barclay (13 January 1938)
RH Spencer (5 April 1938)

Flying Officers
GD Jones (1 July 1937)
GO Mills (28 June 1937)
GG Storey (1 July 1937)
DG Boehm (4 June 1937)
P Burnett (Jan 1939)

Pilot Officers
AL Farrington (27 November .1937)
RH Couchman (23 October 1937)
WH Edwards (8 January 1938)
Acting Pilot Officer CPR Collier (10 September 1938)

Warrant Officers
A Justice (30 September 1938)
WH York (30 September 1938)
F Butler (30 September 1938)
JBK Chapman (26 April 1938)

January 1939
Station: Helwan, Egypt, Middle East

Commanding Officer:
W/Cdr SH Ware

Flight Lieutenants
DP Barclay (13 January 1938)
RH Spencer (5 April 1938)

Flying Officers
GD Jones (1 July 1937)
GO Mills (28 June 1937)
GG Storey (1 July 1937)
DG Boehm (4 June 1937)
P Burnett (Jan 1939)

Pilot Officers
AL Farrington (27 November .1937)
RH Couchman (23 October 1937)
WH Edwards (8 January 1938)
Acting Pilot Officer CPR Collier (10 September 1938)

Warrant Officers
A Justice (30 September 1938)
WH York (30 September 1938)
F Butler (30 September 1938)
JBK Chapman (26 April 1938)

Prisoners of War Middle East 1940—1941
Sgt R Appleyard* 613211 (WOp/AG, L1487)
Sgt RA Bain (Observer)
Bax 33018 (CO, Pilot, L8376)
Sgt JH Beharrel 751077 (Observer,
Sgt MF
Braby 1261839 (possibly aircrew, Greece)
Campbell* 41373 (Pilot, L1487)
AC2 EP Doolin 640566 (WOp/AG,
Cpl JH
Fleming* 536803
P/O Garrad-Cole* 39871 (Pilot,
AC WB Smith 566173 (Observer,
AC1 LEC Wise (WOp/AG)
“home run”.

Details of the second man apparently made captive on the ground in Greece, Sgt Matthew Frederick Braby 1261839, are scant. Born in the first quarter of 1911, his service number indicates enlistment not too long after May 1940. This, together with his rank in 1941, suggests that he is more likely to have been aircrew than ground trade. His age on enlistment in 1940 still met the limits for aircrew (age 31 for pilots and 33 for observers and wireless operator/air gunners). Apparently posted to the Squadron as late as March 1941 and taken prisoner at the fall of Greece, it appears he survived the war as PoW in Germany.

Home runs vs Liberated
Appleyard, Campbell, Fleming, and Garrad-Cole all successfully escaped captivity in Italy or Greece. Garrad-Cole’s crew LAC Walter Braithwaite Smith 566173 (Observer) and AC2 Eric Pearce Doolin 640566 (WOp/AG) were both repatriated from Italy in late 1943, however, the scant details recorded do not show whether they escaped or whether they were liberated following the Italian Armistice of 9 September 1943.

72 OTU Rolls:
No. 72 Operational Training Unit Commanding Officers 1941
W/Cdr Duncan Charles Ruthven Macdonald 37017 OC 72 OTU 11 November 1941 to 5 December 1941, Chief Instructor and OC Training Wing 72 OTU 5 Dec 1941 to c 14 May 1943
Grp Cpt LR Stokes CO No. 72 Operational Training Unit (5 December 1941)

Movement Order No 2/1941 19 December 1941
The double-column layout of the original and its trade groups showed personnel more-or-less by rank and seniority.

Some details in the archive copy (notably some trade group/mustering titles and service numbers) were either obscured in the margin or illegible, shown here by the underscore _. It has been possible to complete some service numbers, from the FEPoW rolls.

Otherwise, the roll which follows is a verbatim copy, original errors and all. Comments and service no correction are shown in the usual way, [thus]. A sadly high proportion of these men are to found in the Far East PoW losses roll and in the Honour Roll.

Officer in Charge: F/Lt KCVD Dundas DFC
Adjutant and Baggage Officer: F/Lt FW Chadwick (to return to 72 OTU)
Ration and Messing Officer: F/O NAW
How (to return to 72 OTU)

Airmen of the party
_61545 W/O Fogg DM - W/O Armament
_64143 F/Sgt Rance AE - Fitter I
_06198 F/Sgt Cumming JR - Metal Rigger
[5]08886 F/Sgt Goodall CA - DMT

__H/GD [ACH/GD: Aircrafthand/General Duties]
__0074 Sgt Roberts SV
[54]9616 Sgt Howcroft FB
[62]5750 Cpl Harnett L
[62]3559 LAC Betts WE
[63]7386 LAC Baker EG [sic: Laker]
[63]0704 LAC Morgan J
[62]8869 LAC Pettit WJ
[62]6386 LAC Whittaker R[A]
__2637 LAC Magowan J
__5001 LAC Scott RS
[63]9172 LAC
Sanderson G
[94]0196 LAC Onions H
[94]0202 AC1 Dumas R
[10]03848 AC1 Bickley GA
__4107 AC1 Ben-David J
__4750 AC1 Rot J
__5831 AC1 Melamed A
[775]052 AC1 Alster R
__4746 AC1 Sabbah M
__4205 AC1 Yakar, T

528219 Sgt Rowley, J
546375 Cpl Kerswill W
623168 Cpl
Williams R
630718 LAC Davey, W
623308 LAC McKendrick G
630239 LAC Paxton A
624123 LAC Wade G
637297 LAC Preece SC
541533 LAC McConnell WM
940710 LAC Fulwood A
546266 LAC Handley TA
940203 LAC Crabb C
940696 AC1 Birch CF
999992 AC1 Murray L
774584 AC1 Ehrmann L
775825 AC1 Kremin I
774575 AC1 Kisin, A
774586 AC1 Abraham H
775309 AC1 Malka J

__H/GG [ACH/GG: Aircrafthand/Ground Gunners]
___452 LAC Clark L
[993]389 LAC
Fisher TWS
[135]9164 AC1 Collins S
1175158 AC1
Cole EF
[130]9863 AC1 Gosling V
[130]9572 AC1 Richards DA
[117]0209 AC1 Clater RFR [1170209 Richard Kenneth Clater]
994691 LAC Williams E
988714 LAC Dunne RN
1109808 AC1 Bell E
1309534 AC1 Jenkinson GW
1326199 AC1 Middleton N
1309567 AC1 Mendy HJ
1283499 AC1 Storey SJ

[634]150 Cpl Constable PR
1005926 LAC Hunt A

629621 Cpl Chalmers JS

___/DMT [Driver, Mechanical Transport]
___291 AC2 Weiss N

ACH/PP [Parachute Packer]
544403 Cpl Fowliss D

ACH/Telephone Operators
533175 Cpl Heywood S
940195 LAC Wellar AL

622234 LAC Nicholson DG
940706 LAC Davis TG

534461 Sgt Callison H
525718 Cpl Woosey SR
701873 LAC Broadbent H
628781 Cpl Slaughter FK
701778 LAC Barber KC
624652 AC1 Kellett _J
626543 AC1 Kinsella T
621609 AC1 Sanderson R

534599 Cpl Hale G
542599 Cpl Hodgson
628120 LAC
Henderson TW [sic: 628120 LAC Henderson TD]
701730 LAC Crawford J
631210 AC1
Fryatt JE
625002 AC1 Holden A
545706 AC1 Revett HJ

Armourers Bomb
950409 LAC Simmons J
1020646 AC1 Mahoney
917767 AC1 Dalby JE
964885 AC1 David I

1111777 AC1 Collie
1063301 AC1 Moffatt
1054114 aC1 Devine J

Fitter Armourers Bomb

623795 AC1 Wilson S

Clerk Accounts
590868 Cpl Robertson C

Clerks General Duties
634172 Cpl Owen HJ
1152228 AC2 Smith J

775024 AC1 Strahilevitz J

Cooks & Butchers
631860 Cpl Langford L
633465 Cpl Mawdesley J
621841 LAC Pulley HJ
955817 LAC Dudley J
774150 LAC Munk HW
775505 AC1 Lichenstein R

631481 Cpl Gent WC
633896 Cpl Muckle T
940652 LAC Stanford FW
946913 LAC Holleran J
775598 LAC Ickovics E
775518 AC1 Schimansky J

1095028 AC2 Clift P

Drivers Mechanical Transport
526653 Cpl Hutton K
527248 Cpl Young T
541777 LAC Hood J
541109 LAC Roden F
647676 LAC Tout REG
650750 LAC Valentine P
701890 LAC Green R
940629 LAC Smart A
646961 LAC Morgan R
940191 LAC Cole PW
774869 AC2 Hirchfeldt A

5337693 Cpl Bishop J
702080 LAC Clark A
539095 LAC Millar PR
648877 LAC Budrey J
637894 LAC Thompson A
645332 LAC Jamieson J
642537 LAC Ward J
940573 LAC Stephens JS
940694 AC1 Taylor R
940201 AC1 Stearn A

Electrician I
541488 Cpl Stephens HG
541041 Cpl Walton R

638733 LAC
Blake G

Electrician II
639604 LAC Anderson W
623880 LAC Shackleton A
632161 LAC Davidson JE
907011 LAC Westgarth LA
960946 AC1 Smith B
1181899 AC1 Stubbs P
916051 AC1 Skewes EM
1189203 AC2 Simmons CH
1367343 AC2 Muir TH

968707 LAC Simpson C
640632 LAC Townsend
938222 LAC Stanyer E
1293927 AC1 Allen DW
989327 AC1 Stuart R
1169108 AC1 Southall HC
635194 AC1 White WS
1100099 AC2 Sim LR

Equipment Assistants
527609 Cpl Trotter JA
946718 LAC Barber DW
949543 AC1 Plattern KA

612508 LAC Minshull [sic: 621508 Alan
907342 AC1 Stadding
1068851 AC2 Marriott GH

Fabric Workers
633088 [sic 533088] LAC Shaw CE [See TNA
AIR 78/142/5 Frame 34: Shaw Charles Edgar 533088]

Fitters II
567170 Sgt Bewley EWC
567975 Cpl
Brown H
569266 LAC Gilbert TJH

566285 Sgt Prior JG
568367 Cpl
Cains CA

Fitter IIA
546674 Cpl Fox J
537229 Cpl Sudbury JW
525386 LAC Marsh WA
572767 LAC Crutchley BR
546840 LAC
Dunbar G [See also “Dunbar” under Flight Mechanic Airframe, below]
622386 AC1 Lee W
1171745 AC1 Sinclair R
1014949 AC1 Hunter
518462 LAC Head E
1055869 AC2 Jefferies JP

522467 Cpl Hillman WG [to the Far East with
Hill, Golding and Wright, survived, apparently to Colombo per Kota Gede]
542063 LAC Fearon JH
642454 LAC Brett C
979816 LAC Robson CW
1106425 AC1 Robson JR
1059747 AC1 Humphries WG
1059726 AC1 Robertson JS
523351 LAC Turner C
639082 AC2 Chase J
917817 AC2 Brown M

Fitter IIE
521550 Sgt Evetts LR
520961 Cpl Cox CW
530031 LAC Croston T
638527 LAC Leach CR
541445 AC1 Murray D
522412 AC2 Morris RV

526244 Cpl Burns K
528978 LAC Kelling
572463 LAC Owens JL
649399 LAC Wildish CW
1013042 AC1 Gamble J
927430 AC2 Baker SJ

Fitters Aero Engine
522456 Cpl Peakman RG
564645 Cpl Hind JF

525736 Cpl Hamshaw F

Metal Riggers
565794 Sgt Venning RE
539948 Cpl Rowlands BL
539918 Cpl Taylor JH

563780 Sgt
Gore JA
539946 Cpl
Sainsbury RMJ
539814 Cpl Montgomery JW

Flight Mechanic Airframe
624016 LAC Byford GA
611073 LAC Jones FW
543945 LAC Leonard L
540781 LAC Blacher RC
619147 LAC Walker E
611617 AC1 Beaver G
1066972 AC2 Gibbs FG
1196742 AC2 Williams AE
1272208 AC2 Baines EJ

522519 LAC Bridgen K
646070 LAC Fraser JS
622380 LAC McMorland WW
546670 LAC Dunbar G [Here the Adjutant Office clerks made a slip. Dunbar was already correctly listed, in the Fitter IIA group. Here his name has been inadvertently repeated against the service number of 546670 LAC Derrick David Ray, whose name does not otherwise appear. Both men went with 211 Squadron to the Far East. The roll call as they boarded the train may well have been briefly interrupted as the error was sorted out. Both men were to fall captive in
Java in March 1942. Dave Ray did not survive. He lies in Ambon War Cemetery. ]
940755 AC1 Stephens [JW]
1152386 AC1 Morris L
1067598 AC2 Clee JH
964788 AC2 AC2 Waterhouse J
931023 AC2 Skedge MH

Flight Mechanic Engine
530498 Cpl Sutton AB
633997 LAC Bates RH
624563 LAC
Dudman RG
624097 LAC Horan M
529829 LAC Quarmby L
649416 LAC Gurney AW
649395 LAC Pierce FJ
523578 LAC Moyers LJ
626461 LAC Flynn JJ
649417 LAC Evans G
649538 LAC
Billington HG
645752 AC1 Mason G
918780 AC1 Collery WJ
985534 AC1 Evans MJ
814176 AC2 Burton G
1057549 AC2 McCormack T

649388 LAC Cox RL
541905 LAC Cooke CT
936431 LAC Emmonds FG
649419 LAC Langford TW
654746 LAC Williams T
649400 LAC Hill GW
644059 LAC Runnacles GI
515273 LAC Knight T
649539 LAC Liversey R [sic:
643462 LAC Clark J
943231 LAC Charlton MB
1151966 AC1 Cooke ND
977705 AC1 Morris CI
633923 AC2 Owens J
1023188 AC2 Burns E

Instrument Repairers I
624374 LAC Gibbons DA
623414 Cpl Lewis TA
640513 AC1 McDonald JL

632633 Cpl Cochrane R
1269719 AC1 Grove G

Instrument Repairers II
924830 AC1 Clark DT

Mechanical Transport Mechanics
1105367 LAC Taylor F
1171890 AC2 Myers J
1015634 LAC Ward W
1015634 [sic: 1019069] AC2 Jones O

Nursing Orderlies
635477 Cpl Barrett DG
1156482 AC2 Price BA
970298 LAC Bayley G

977016 AC1 Davis WL
1236651 AC2 Fairless T

Metal Worker
560888 Cpl Cook

Motor Cyclists
912627 LAC McKellar GA
908080 LAC Holman RF

______ Sgt Mc Dermott
615342 LAC
Abbs LW
552256 LAC Baldwin RJ
1261326 LAC Richards RB

552272 Cpl
Gibson W
902187 LAC Orson AR
1260784 LAC Smith AJ

Wireless Operators
639927 Cpl Ninnis ER
640785 Cpl Graham WF
1262179 AC1 Jones WI
944334 AC1 Simpson GA
977552 AC1 Morris JA
1073444 AC2 Leece DH
1118455 AC2 Arthur N

640149 Cpl Beavis VF
641845 Cpl Marsh EA
774094 LAC Gavigan EP
925199 AC1 Worrell FG
1195232 AC2 Sims E
1202564 AC2 Morley AI
1198371 AC2 Parker RC

Wireless Operator Mechanics
637389 LAC Eaglebott RA
639131 AC1 Topliss AW

637291 AC1 Baker RBE

Wireless Electrical Mechanics
574174 AC1 Smith G

In summary, there were 292 airmen of the Squadron in the above party, under command of the experienced F/Lt Dundas with two 72 OTU officers assisting for the duration of the journey North. The airmen covered the gamut of ground trades from Fabric Worker upwards, of every rank, comprising a single Warrant Officer, three Flight Sergeants, 10 Sergeants, 47 Corporals, 120 Leading Aircraftmen, 79 Aircraftmen 1st Class and 32 Aircraftmen 2nd Class.

The odds are that the majority of these men remained with the Squadron, departing Helwan on 16 January 1942 to embark upon HMT Yoma at Port Tewfik, departing on 17 January for Aden and on to Colombo to join the Stepsister JS1 convoy bound for the Far East. Perhaps 24 of them will have been with the Air Party leaving Helwan on the four days 25 to 28 January 1942.

Dominion aircrew rolls
From the outset in June 1937, pilots from around the Commonwealth were a strong presence among the Squadron aircrew. The
Australians have been listed separately for obvious reasons.

Canadian and RCAF personnel 1939—1945
All but two of the personnel of Canadian origin known to have been associated with 211 Squadron over the course of the war were aircrew.

The two pilots from the Middle East period, Dundas and Marshall, had enlisted in the RAF pre-war. While Dundas had prior service in the RCAF as an airman, Marshall although of Canadian birth had arrived in the United Kingdom as a child and joined the RAF in 1932. While Marshall survived, Dundas was lost in the first Far East campaign.

In the 1942 Far East air war, later checking found that one airman, 1291207 AC2 Edward Thomas Mickleburgh RAFVR was of Canadian birth, an unusual case among groundcrew airmen of the Squadron. Taken captive on Java, he survived a number moves as a FEPoW until October 1944. He was among the many lost aboard the Maros Maru while being transported by the Japanese for forced labour.

In the Burma period, 10 RCAF pilots and one navigator were members when the Squadron resumed operations in January 1944, representing about half the Squadron’s Pilot strength. One of the RCAF pilots, F/O CO Barlow, was from the United States of America. At some point they were joined by F/Lt Ted Einboden RAF, a Technical Branch officer.

The Canadians, with two RAAF pilots and one South African Air Force pilot, made up the strong Dominion character of the Squadron (which it pretty well retained throughout). There are published accounts that report the entire pilot strength of 211 Squadron as Canadian: in this they are mistaken.

Over the course of the Burma campaign from January 1944 to May 1945, 19 RCAF pilots served in 211 Squadron, of whom ten were lost in action or in accidents (recorded in Beaufighter losses, the India and Burma page and on the Honour Roll).

Of the 24 men of Canadian origin who served in 211 Squadron from 1939 to 1945 there were thus just 11 survivors.

Name and No



211 Squadron from


Adamson, William George R118406/J85700



January 1944

Missing 24 March 1944

Barlow, Cyril Oscare J26409



November 1944

Son of Laurence C Barlow and Ysabel M Barlow of Grosse Point, Michigan, USA
11 December 1944

Copeland JM J86611



November 1944


Cruickshank Donald Ian J12883



March 1944

Missing 14 March 1944

Cuddy AK J16295



Aug 1943/Jan 1944

Missing 27 August 1944, PoW Rangoon Gaol liberated 30 April 1945

Depew, Neil Francis J86437



January 1944

Missing 11 March 1944

Dundas, Kenneth Crispin Vivian Douglas 41000 DFC



June 1939

DFC 1941
10 February 1942

Einboden, Theodore Martin 50337




Engineering Officer, Technical Branch
RCAF from April 1945

Edgar, John Robert J8141



December 1943

KAO 27 December 1943
Chilliwack War Memorial

Fitzpatrick, John Edward R168763



February 1945

Missing 8 February 1945

Haakenson MJC J12845



March 1944

Missing 13 June 1944, PoW Rangoon Gaol freed 30 April 1945.

Hall, Warren Douglas R109174 J86784



January 1944

Shot resisting capture
7 May 1944

Harvey, Jack Henry Charles Harvey 1585463



January 1944

Son of Henry E and Hannah E Harvey of London, ON, Canada.
Nav/W KIA 14 October 1944 aged 26, with F/Sgt Hipperson, Beaufighter V
NE288 ‘O’

Holtan FE J24377



December 1944


Jackson, William, J14842



May 1944

KIA 11 June 1944

O'Mara RJ R127623 DFC



January 1944

Reported by Manderson to be an American. Born New Hampshire 1916, later Toronto. DFC November 1944

Marshall, John Roy 515903 DFM



July 1940

See also CFR Clark, W Baird

Mickleburgh. Edward Thomas 1291207



January 1942

Son of Edward and Amelia E Mickleburgh of Penticton BC, Canada. FEPoW March 1942
Maros Maru 1 October 1944, aged 23.

Moffat LG J16307



November 1943

ORB records as Moffatt.

Strumbos WP J22871



April 1945


Thomson DL R122381/J86788



January 1944

Wounded 16 February 1944

Vaughan, Ross George, J88656



January 1944

KIA 1 August 1944

Waddell, George Alfred J16291



January 1944

Missing 27 March 1944

White, Frederick Thomas Herbert R168713




RCAF 1941

AK Keith Cuddy
Originally of Saskatchewan, Cuddy was a pilot and the first Canadian to join 211 Squadron upon its re-forming in India, his arrival from the Middle East noted in the Squadron record for 26 August 1943. With the casual irony of war, just on one year later he was posted missing, with his Navigator W/O Tomlinson, from an operation in Beaufighter
LZ232 ‘D’ on 27 August 1944. Both men survived captivity in Rangoon Gaol. Mal Haakenson, another Rangoon survivor, kept in touch with Keith Cuddy post-war. Keith, then of Manitoba, passed away in January 1998.

TM Einboden
F/Lt Ted Einboden 50337 had joined the RAF proper as a direct civilian entrant some time after March 1938. He had advanced to Sergeant (RAF service number 616537, Technical Branch) by the time that he was commissioned in January 1943. Posted to India and to 211 Squadron as Engineering Officer, he was made Flight Lieutenant by December 1944 if not before. That Christmas, he managed to cadge a lift with Thompson and Butcher on their night op of 25/26 December 1944 to Prome and Taunggup: all returned safely, no movement being seen with cloud in the target area. As the Squadron prepared for conversion to the Mosquito in May 1945, he was also a member of the Advance Air Party that set out for Trichinopoly only to find the Squadron’s new base had already been redesignated, leaving them to carry on by road to Yelahanka on 4 May.

His appointment to the RCAF, gazetted in October 1945, was dated with effect from April 1945. Returning to Canada after the war, he later took up farming in Ontario, married, and raised six children. Theodore Martin “Ted” Einboden, of Bolton Ontario, died on 21 March 1987.

JE Fitzpatrick
Born in Saskatchewan on 12 February 1922 and enlisted in the RCAF at Calgary on 12 June 1942. From 7 ITS Saskatoon 27 September 1942 to 27 December 1942, then to 6 EFTS Prince Albert to 20 February 1943 and 7 SFTS Macleod to 25 June 1943. On qualifying as a pilot Fitzpatrick was made Sergeant on 11 June 1943 and thence to 1 GRS Summerside 26 June 1943 to 11 September 1943. Embarked for the UK at Halifax 14 September 1943.

To 20 (P) AFU 19 October 1943. Attached 1521 Beam Approach Training Flight at Wymeswold 21 December 1943 to 4 January 1944 (then affilliated to 20 (P) AFU). Posted to 5 PDC 25 April 1944 for embarkation to the Middle East 4 May 1944, where he completed 10 Course at 79 OTU Nicosia. Posted to 224 Group ACSEA on 13 January 1945 and on to 211 Squadron 14 January 1945. Lost in action Beaufighter LZ399 ‘V’ on 8 February 1945 with his navigator F/Sgt Lock.

FE Holtan
Frank Erland Holtan remained with the RCAF for many years after the war and passed away in 2000.

Moffat LG
Lloyd George “Moff” Moffat reached India destined for 211 Squadron in that uncertain period of muddle and delay in mid-1943 which saw aircrew languish in Poona at the Air Transport Pool, where he first met fellow pilot EL (Les, Fred)
Wood. The difficulties were such that, much later, Moffat recalled stories that they might have been posted back to Malta: a somewhat unlikely fate at that date. By late 1943 he had reached the Squadron at Ranchi, and was among those to celebrate Christmas 1943, signing the menu that day in the customary way. Moffat continued flying post -war as a commercial pilot for 33 years. He flew mostly with Canadian Airlines, finishing his career with them as a Boeing 747 pilot on the Canada—New Zealand—Australia route, and for three summers based in Auckland on the Auckland—Sydney route. He retired to British Columbia and died in March 2005 after a short illness.

RJ O’Mara
Raymond Joseph “Red” O’Mara J85701 was born in 1916 at Laconia, New Hampshire. Later to Canada and to Toronto where he enlisted on 15 August 1940. Trained at 6 ITS (to 30 January 1942), 20 EFTS (10 April 1942) and 13 SFTS (30 July 1942). Commissioned in 1944.
DFC November 1944. Pilot, crewed with W/O G Manderson DFC.

FTH White
Born 24 February 1923. From Calgary in Alberta, White joined the RCAF in 1941 at age 18. Demobbed in Vancouver after the war, he went on to serve in the RCAF Reserve in Victoria, British Columbia, from 1956 to 1961. Frederick White died on 2 October 2008.

New Zealand and RNZAF personnel 1939—1945
Magill, later highly decorated, was the first to join the Squadron at Grantham in June 1937, remaining until
April 1938. Four New Zealanders served with the Squadron in the Middle East and/or Greece (Buchanan DFC, Campbell, Fabian, and the unfortunate Nedwill AFC, so briefly in command of the Squadron at Paramythia). Fabian had trained as a pilot in World War I.

In the first Far East action in early 1942, three more stepped forward (Bryant, Cummins and Foreman). Bryant the LAC had been born in New Zealand, later returning to the UK with his English mother and sister after the death of his father.

Not unlike the Australians and Canadians, several were direct entrants to the RAF, while three served in or later transferred to the RNZAF, and one transferred to the RAAF. Four of the seven survived the war.

Name and no



211 Squadron from


Bryant, Ernest William 1185504


LAC groundcrew:
Driver, MT.

January 1942-1945

Born in New Zealand in 1915, son of Harry and Annie Maria Bryant.UK 1920s. RAFVR August 1940. Middle East November 1941. Taken PoW March 1942 Java. Held Java, Sumatra (Railway). Died Sumatra (Railway) 29 June 1945, aged 30 years

Buchanan, Lindsay Basil “Buck” 40885 DFC



May 1940 to April 1941

Born Palmerston North 4 November 1917.
Joined RAF April 1938 on SSC. 113 Squadron 1939.
DFC London Gazette 8 April 1941.
Easter Sunday 13 Apr 41

Campbell, Robert Douglas “Bobby” 41373



July 1939 to January 1941

Born Hamilton 7 July 1918. RAF October 1938 on SSC, Uxbridge. To 4 FTS Abu Sueir then to 211 Squadron July 1939. Shot down and PoW Valona raid 6 January 1941. Escaped 1943, transferred to RNZAF December 1943 serving until 1969. Died Hastings 31 August 1994.

Cummins, Peter Lindly Dick “Arch” 580469 & 51283 MBE


Sgt Observer

December 1941 to
February 1942

Born Dunedin 13 January 1917. RAF 17 January 1938 to 1 January 1944. Served with 230 Squadron RAF Middle & Far East early 1939 to June 1941. Instructor, 70 OTU Kenya 1941. 211 Squadron RAF from December 1941, evacuated from Java February 1942. To RNZAF 1 January 1944 to 14 January 1972, MBE 1969. Died Palmerston North, 7 February 1993 .

Fabian, Alexander James Muir "Curly"
RAF 60164 RAAF 257621



OIC Stores

19 January 1941 to 26 April 1941

Born Wellington 23 October 1898.
Royal Aero Club NZ Aviators Certificate
2 December 1918.
Applied for RAAF commission September 1939, July 1940
Enlisted RAF, commissioned P/O Admin & Special Duties Branch November 1940.
C&C HQ RAF ME Cairo November 1940.
211 Squadron Greece 1941
Commission relinquished and transferred to RAAF July 1941
107 MU 26 April 1941
Mention in Despatches
January 1942
Petrol Liaison Officer 1942
F/Lt January 1943
OIC Explosives Park 1943
141 MU, Italy August 1943 to November 1944
S/Ldr July 1944
Repatriated to Australia December 1944
Discharged S/Ldr 22 May 1945 on demob
Deceased October 1967.

Foreman, William Charles Wadsworth 403770


P/O Observer

December 1941 to March 1942

Born Portsmouth, England 1 January 1912. Enlisted RNZAF at Levin as AP u/t 29 September 1940. Air Observer training Canada January 1941. After tour with 107 Squadron, to 211 Squadron 14 January 1942. Evacuated from Java aboard Tung Song 2 March 1942. Returned to NZ May 1942 serving with 1 Squadron RNZAF, to RNZAF Reserve 1945. Died late1970 possibly at Puahue, near Hamilton.

Magill, Graham Reese 39236


Pilot Officer


Born Te Aroha, Cambridge, 23 January 1915; electrical engineer; joined RAF 31 August 1936. 47 Squadron 30 April 38, F/O 28 February 1939, transferred to RAFO 31 August 1940. Later commanded 180 Squadron 1943; Operations Staff, No. 2 Group, 1943—45. Group Cpt Jan 1955, Allied Forces Central Europe (Plans & Operations, RAF Element); AC Jan 1960; AVM 1 Jan 1964, retd AVM GR Magill CB CBE OBE DFC & Bar, GD 29 Jan 1970. Deceased 1 December 1998. Air of Authority bio; Wings Over Cambridge bio.

Nedwill, Richard John Courtney 34169 AFC


S/Ldr Pilot

22 to 26 March 1941

Born Christchurch 2 June 1913. Joined RAF March 1934 on SSC.
4FTS Abu Sueir & Habbaniya 1938-1941. AFC London Gazette 1 April 1941 for his long efforts in flying training at 4FTS, 1941.
Recorded post-war as serving in 112 Squadron 1941, apparently in error. Posted as CO to 211 Squadron 22 March 1941.
KAO Paramythia
26 March 1941 in 112 Squadron Gladiator II N5910.

South Africa & South African Air Force
P/O Kearey, Charles Sydney 39234
211 Squadron pilot, 30 June 1937—April 1938. In
April 1938 Kearey travelled with the Squadron to Egypt as supernumerary, on posting to 14 Squadron at Amman in Trans-Jordan. Later Major CS Kearey 103042V of the South African Air Force, he was awarded the Air Force Cross in January 1945.

P/O Macnab, James Crawford Gibb 39235
211 Squadron pilot, 30 June 1937—April 1938. The MacNabs were from Lanarkshire, Scotland. JCG Macnab senior first went to South Africa in 1900. Back in the UK he joined the Territorial Army in 1908 as a Surgeon, returning to South Africa in 1910 to take residence at Johannesburg, where he married in 1912. JCG Macnab junior was one of their six children. In November 1936, having returned to the UK, he was granted a Short Service Commission in the RAF. Like Kearey, Macnab also travelled with the Squadron to Egypt as supernumerary in
April 1938, for his posting to 14 Squadron at Amman. A Flight Lieutenant from February 1940, he apparently survived the war.

Sgt (later F/Sgt) Donaldson, William John 778767
Pilot with the Squadron by
October 1943 in India. Posted missing on operations 24 February 1944 with F/Sgt Bewsher, LZ363 ‘R’. Donaldson’s Service No indicates 1940 enlistment via Rhodesia. The Squadron record of this period notes Dominion aircrew by country rather than Service: for Donaldson as South Africa.

Lt Col ET (Ted) Strever 108521 DFC
Awarded the DFC while serving with 217 Squadron on Malta in 1942, after an operation in July 1942 during which Strever and his crew had to ditch their damaged Beaufort I L8920. Quickly taken captive by the Italians, they were soon able to escape by the simple expedient of hi-jacking the Regia Aeronautica Cant Z506 floatplane transporting them to Italy, which then also had to ditch, this time off Malta. Their exploit and rescue by ASR launch HSL107 is well described and illustrated in Graham Pitchfork’s Shot Down and in the Drink.

Service with 22 Squadron on Ceylon followed from late 1942 to late 1944. Thereafter, two postings to 211 Squadron, though promulgated, did not eventuate. The first, to be 211 Squadron CO, was not taken up as the 22 Squadron aircraft taking him to his new Squadron crashed on take-off, 1 November 1944: Strever survived, badly injured and hospitalised. S/Ldr Martineau took command of 211 Squadron.

Returned to active duty, Strever did reach 211 Squadron in April 1945 only to find his posting there as Flight Commander had been superseded by local events. The 27 Squadron CO W/Cdr TP Bradley DSO DFC had been killed in action on 10 April 1945—Strever was promptly appointed 27 Squadron CO in his place. Daughter Gail Strever-Morkel collated and published his biography On Laughter Silvered Wings in 2013.

Southern Rhodesia
All three were 211 Squadron pilots of the Greece campaign:

P/O JC (Jack, “Pip”) Cox 84989 DFC
Of South African birth, Cox was with 211 Squadron from early October 1940 to at least July 1941, and was awarded the DFC while at Wadi Gazouza. By 1943 he was a Flight Lieutenant serving in Rhodesia. He was killed on active service there on 5 March 1943, possibly to do with Tiger Moth II T7515, damaged beyond repair on that date with No 27 EFTS at Induna near Bulawayo. He lies in Bulawayo (Athlone) Cemetery in Zimbabwe.

P/O Jeffry Campbell Ross Hooper SR 89777 DFC
Born 1919 in Southern Rhodesia, younger brother of JGM
Hooper DFC. The brothers had trained together as pilots on Tiger Moths in Rhodesia from early 1940, before further training apparently with 4 SFTS at Habbaniya (from their enlistment service numbers).

The pair were posted with their crews to 211 Squadron from 23 January 1941. P/O Hooper flew 11 operations in Greece with Sgts Page and Kearns. Later of 11 Squadron from about June 1941, then the Strategic Reconnaissance Unit ME. While serving with the SRU, Hooper was wounded in action 6 December 1941, in Maryland II AH370. Sgt Observer LR Page 521280 took over control and later assisted Hooper to land—earning a bar to Page’s DFM and an immediate DFC for Hooper. In From Greek Tragedy to Night Intruder, Graham Pitchfork gave a fine account of Len Page’s RAF service and their Maryland adventure.

Made a F/Lt in February 1943, JCR Hooper DFC completed a tour on Mosquitoes over Europe. Married in March 1945, he relinquished his RAF commission in January 1946, on repatriation and appointment to the Southern Rhodesia Forces. Returning to civilian life in Rhodesia, in early 1955 Hooper was appointed Civil Commissioner at Shabani (modern Zvishavane), a mining town some 100 miles East of Bulawayo.

On 1 March 1958, four DH.82 Tiger Moth aircraft of the Bulawayo Light Aircraft Club visited the newly refurbished civil aerodrome at Shabani to take part in an air display. During the afternoon, the aircraft had given more than 120 flights to locals. Shortly after 6:00pm that afternoon (about half an hour before sunset), the Club’s Chief Flying Instructor, Mr Ted Crookes, took Commissioner Hooper aloft.

The pair were flying in Tiger Moth VP-YNW, an ex SRAF aircraft SR-94 (although there are inconsistencies of identity detail in extant accounts). The aircraft crashed, apparently while executing a low level turn, and caught fire. Crookes and Hooper both died in the crash. Hooper’s funeral took place the following day, Sunday 2 March. As the Light Plane Club aircraft flew back to Bulawayo that day, they dropped wreaths on the site of the crash, as poignantly recorded by the Bulawayo Chronicle on Monday 3 March.

P/O John Gower Martin Hooper SR 89778 DFC
Brother of JCR
Hooper DFC, born February 1916 in Southern Rhodesia. 211 Squadron from 23 January 1941 for 35 operations with with Sgts Geary and Sharratt from February to early June 1941. JGM Hooper was awarded the DFC in May 1942. The two bothers had managed to wangle postings to the same units from enlistment until at least 1942, by which time both had been decorated for their war service.

Later Squadron Leader, in April 1946 JGM Hooper also relinquished his RAF commission, on appointment to the Southern Rhodesia Forces. In Laddie Lucas’ Out of the Blue, Hooper recalled the 211 Squadron operations of Easter 1941. Living in Zimbabwe, he survived until at least 2004, corresponding occasionally with old 211 comrades.

This partial record of 211 Squadron personnel from 1937 onwards is drawn mainly from the official sources noted below, with some reference to individual narratives, Log Books and personal correspondence with, among others, Ian Carter, the late Bill
Baird, and family members of ex-211 Squadron men.

In the case of the New Zealanders, I am indebted to Errol Martyn for pre-publication access to For Your Tomorrow, Volume III, recording the biographies of NZ airmen lost in service since 1915. For the service history of the Canadian Fitzpatrick I am grateful to Hugh A Halliday, RCAF researcher.

72 Operational Training Unit Operations Record Book TNA AIR 29/686
177 Squadron Operations Record Book TNA AIR 27/1117
211 Squadron Operations Record Book TNA AIR 27/1302, TNA AIR 27/1303

Fabian AJM 257621 RAAF A9300 file National Archives Australia and personal correspondence with Errol Martyn
Hooper JGM personal correspondence with EL Cooper 1986 via I Carter
Hooper JCR: own correspondence with The de Havilland Moth Club UK re Hooper and DH.82 VP-YNW
Hooper JCR: Bulawayo Chronicle 3 March 1958 (via British Library Enquiry Service)
RCAF members: personal correspondence with Elizabeth Kaegi
RNZAF members: personal correspondence with Errol Martyn

Air Ministry Index to Airmen and Airwomen UK National Archives AIR 78
Air Force List, Air Ministry (HMSO various dates) issues for July 1937, October 1937, January 1938, April 1938, November 1938, December 1938, January 1939, March 1939, April 1957.
Caledon Citizen Bolton, Ontario 1 Apr 1987
Family Search Zimbabwe Death Notices 1 March 1958: Crooks Edward, Hooper Jeffrey (sic) Campbell Ross
Flight issues 1930—1966
Free BMD records, various
London Gazette issues 1930—1966 HMSO
Dept of Civil Aviation, Rhodesia and Nyasaland Report of the Director of Civil Aviation for the Year 1954/55 (and 1955/56, 1956/57. 1957/58, 1958/59. 1959/60, 1960/61)

Allison & Hayward They Shall Grow Not Old (CATP Museum, Canada)
Barrass Air of Authority
Bowyer The Flying Elephants: History of No 27 Squadron RFC/RAF 1915 to 1969 (Macdonald 1972)
Jefford The Flying Camels (Jefford 1995)
Lucas Out of the Blue (Hutchinson 1985)
Martyn For Your Tomorrow Volumes I, III (Volplane)
Maton Honour The Air Forces (Token 2013)
Pitchfork Men Behind The Medals Flypast Jan 1996
Pitchfork Men Behind the Medals Ch 8 From Greek Tragedy to Night Intruder (Leo Cooper 1998)
Pitchfork Shot Down and in the Drink (National Archives 2005)
Salt Pride of Eagles: A History of the Rhodesian Air Force (Helion and 30 South 2015)
Strever-Morkel On Laughter Silvered Wings (Pen & Sword 2013)
Thomson New Zealanders With the RAF Vol I, II, III
Young & Warne Sixty Squadron: 1916 RFC—RAF 1966 (Eurasia Press 1966)


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Site created 15 Apr 2001, last updated 31 Mar 2024. Page created 23 Feb 2005, last updated 10 Mar 2024
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