Sir Thomas White
Thomas White, Melbourne, c. 1930
|Minister for Air and Civil Aviation|
19 December 1949 –11 May 1951
|Prime Minister||Robert Menzies|
|Preceded by||Arthur Drakeford|
|Succeeded by|| Philip McBride (Air)|
Larry Anthony (Civil Aviation)
|Minister for Trade and Customs|
14 January 1933 –8 November 1938
|Prime Minister||Joseph Lyons|
|Preceded by||Henry Gullett|
|Succeeded by||John Perkins|
|Member of the Australian Parliament |
3 August 1929 –21 June 1951
|Preceded by||William Watt|
|Succeeded by||Percy Joske|
|Born||26 April 1888|
North Melbourne, Victoria
|Died||13 October 1957 69) (aged|
South Yarra, Victoria
|Political party|| Nationalist (1929–1931)|
United Australia (1931–1945)
Vera Deakin (m. 1920)
|Occupation||Soldier; company director|
|Awards|| Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire |
Distinguished Flying Cross
Mentioned in Despatches (2)
Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration
|Branch/service|| Citizen Military Forces (1902–1940)|
Australian Flying Corps (1914–1920)
Citizen Air Force (1940–1944)
|Years of service||1902–1944|
|Unit||Mesopotamian Half Flight (1915)|
|Commands||6th Battalion (1926–1931)|
|Battles/wars||First World War |
Second World War
Sir Thomas Walter White, KBE , DFC , VD (26 April 1888 – 13 October 1957) was an Australian politician and First World War pilot. In 1914 he became one of the first airmen trained for the Australian Flying Corps (AFC), and the following year was among the first AFC members to see action when he was deployed to the Middle East with the Mesopotamian Half Flight. After carrying out several missions behind Turkish lines, he was captured in November 1915 but escaped in July 1918. White was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and twice mentioned in despatches for his war service. He married Vera Deakin, a Red Cross worker and daughter of former Australian Prime Minister Alfred Deakin, in 1920.
The Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) is the third-level military decoration awarded to officers, and since 1993 to other ranks, of the United Kingdom's Royal Air Force and other services, and formerly to officers of other Commonwealth countries, for "an act or acts of valour, courage or devotion to duty whilst flying in active operations against the enemy".
The Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration, post-nominal letters VD, was established in 1899 as recognition for long and meritorious service as a part-time commissioned officer in any of the organized military forces of the British Colonies, Dependencies and Protectorates. It superseded the Volunteer Officers' Decoration for India and the Colonies in all these territories, but not in the Indian Empire.
The Australian Flying Corps (AFC) was the branch of the Australian Army responsible for operating aircraft during World War I, and the forerunner of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). The AFC was established in 1912, though it was not until 1914 that it began flight training.
White began his parliamentary career in 1929 when he was elected to the House of Representatives as the Member for Balaclava in Victoria. He served as Minister for Trade and Customs in Joseph Lyons' United Australia Party government from 1933 to 1938, but resigned when he was excluded from Lyons' inner cabinet. He joined the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) shortly after the outbreak of the Second World War and saw service in Australia and the United Kingdom. Returning to parliament as a member of the newly formed Liberal Party in 1945, he served as Minister for Air and Minister for Civil Aviation in Robert Menzies' government from 1949 to 1951. His term coincided with the commitment of RAAF squadrons to the Korean War and the Malayan Emergency. Australia's High Commissioner to the United Kingdom from 1951 to 1956, White was knighted in 1952 and died in October 1957.
The House of Representatives is the lower house of the bicameral Parliament of Australia, the upper house being the Senate. Its composition and powers are established in Chapter I of the Constitution of Australia.
The Division of Balaclava was an Australian electoral division in the state of Victoria. The division was proclaimed in 1900, and was one of the original 65 divisions to be contested at the first federal election. It was named for the suburb of Balaclava, which in turn was named for a battlefield of the Crimean War. It was based in the wealthy inner southern suburbs of Melbourne, including Brighton and Sandringham. It was always a safe seat for the conservative parties, being held successively by Protectionist Party, Nationalist Party, United Australia Party and Liberal Party members. It was abolished and replaced by the Division of Goldstein in 1984.
Victoria is a state in south-eastern Australia. Victoria is Australia's smallest mainland state and its second-most populous state overall, making it the most densely populated state overall. Most of its population lives concentrated in the area surrounding Port Phillip Bay, which includes the metropolitan area of its state capital and largest city, Melbourne, Australia's second-largest city. Victoria is bordered by Bass Strait and Tasmania to the south, New South Wales to the north, the Tasman Sea to the east, and South Australia to the west.
Thomas Walter White was born on 26 April 1888 at Hotham, North Melbourne. He was the son of Charles James White, a brass-finisher from England, and Emily Jane ( née Jenkins) of Victoria. Educated at Moreland State School, White joined the Citizen Forces as a trumpeter in 1902. He served in artillery and engineering units for the next eight years. In January 1911 he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the 5th Australian Regiment. He was promoted to lieutenant in June 1912, and to captain in November 1913.
North Melbourne is an inner suburb of Melbourne, Australia, 2 km north-west of Melbourne's Central Business District. Its local government area is the City of Melbourne. At the 2016 Census, North Melbourne had a population of 14,940.
Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc, in proportions which can be varied to achieve varying mechanical and electrical properties. It is a substitutional alloy: atoms of the two constituents may replace each other within the same crystal structure.
The Australian Army Reserve is a collective name given to the reserve units of the Australian Army. Since the Federation of Australia in 1901, the reserve military force has been known by many names, including the Citizens Forces, the Citizen Military Forces, the Militia and, unofficially, the Australian Military Forces. In 1980, however, the current name—Australian Army Reserve—was officially adopted, and it now consists of a number of components based around the level of commitment and training obligation that its members are required to meet.
In August 1914, two weeks after the outbreak of the First World War, White became one of the first four students to commence training at Point Cook as a pilot in the Australian Flying Corps (AFC).He was later described by a biographer as "pugnacious and impatient for success, with a disdain for authority and a suspicion of elites". White recalled flying in the school's Bristol Boxkite: "The senses took the place of the instruments. One's eyes and ears did duty as engine counters; the rush of the air in the face told whether the climb or glide was at the right angle." In September he crashed the Boxkite into Point Cook's hangar while attempting to land in a crosswind; the dent he made was never repaired, and came to be recognised as part of the base's history. The Australian Aero Club held its inaugural meeting at Point Cook in October; White was the club's first secretary. The following month, he graduated from his flying course with his fellow students, who included the future Chief of the Air Staff, Richard Williams.
RAAF Williams is a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) military air base set across two locations, at Point Cook and Laverton, located approximately 20 kilometres (12 mi) south-west of the Melbourne central business district in Victoria, Australia. Both establishments previously existed as separate RAAF Bases until 1989 when they were amalgamated to form RAAF Williams. The name was chosen in honour of Air Marshal Sir Richard Williams, the 'father' of the RAAF.
The Boxkite was the first aircraft produced by the British and Colonial Aeroplane Company. A pusher biplane based on the successful Farman III, it was one of the first aircraft types to be built in quantity. As the type was used by Bristol for instruction purposes at their flying schools at Larkhill and Brooklands many early British aviators learned to fly in a Boxkite. Four were purchased in 1911 by the War Office and examples were sold to Russia and Australia. It continued to be used for training purposes until after the outbreak of the First World War.
The Royal Victorian Aero Club is an Australian aero club based at Moorabbin Airport in Melbourne. Originating in 1914 it is amongst the world's oldest Aviation organisations.
In April 1915, White was appointed a captain in the Australian Imperial Force and adjutant of the Mesopotamian Half Flight, the first AFC unit to see active service. 50 miles per hour (80 km/h), while the desert wind could reach 80 miles per hour (130 km/h), meaning that the aircraft often made no headway or were simply blown backwards.Based initially in Basra on the Shatt-el-Arab waterway and operating primitive Maurice Farman biplanes, the Half Flight assisted the Indian Army during the Mesopotamian campaign, conducting reconnaissance and sabotage missions against Turkish forces. The Farmans were only capable of top speeds of
The First Australian Imperial Force was the main expeditionary force of the Australian Army during World War I. It was formed on 15 August 1914, following Britain's declaration of war on Germany, initially with a strength of one infantry division and one light horse brigade. The infantry division subsequently fought at Gallipoli between April and December 1915, being reinforced by a second division which was later raised, as well as three light horse brigades. After being evacuated to Egypt the AIF was expanded to five infantry divisions, which were committed to the fighting in France and Belgium along the Western Front in March 1916. A sixth infantry division was partially raised in 1917 in the United Kingdom, but was broken up and used as reinforcements following heavy casualties on the Western Front. Meanwhile, two mounted divisions remained in the Middle East to fight against Turkish forces in the Sinai and Palestine.
Adjutant is a military appointment given to an officer who assists the commanding officer with unit administration, mostly the management of human resources in army unit. The term adjudant is used in French-speaking armed forces as a non-commissioned officer rank similar to a staff sergeant or warrant officer but is not equivalent to the role or appointment of an adjutant.
The Mesopotamian Half-Flight (MHF), or Australian Half-Flight, was the first Australian Flying Corps (AFC) unit to see active service during World War I. Formed in April 1915 at the request of the Indian Government, the half-flight's personnel were sent to Mesopotamia where they were equipped with a small number of outdated and barely serviceable aircraft. They later operated in the Tigris Valley in support of British and Indian forces under the command of Major General Charles Townshend. The unit's operations came to an end in December 1915 and the following month the flight was subsumed into other units of the AFC which were being formed in Egypt. It was officially disbanded in October 1916.
White carried out several reconnaissance and bombing operations behind enemy lines. twenty-four kilometres (fifteen miles) past enemy troops while his observer, Captain Francis Yeats-Brown, kept watch with his rifle at the ready; the "Keystone Cops adventure", as historian Alan Stephens described it, culminated in the engine finally powering up and allowing White to take off and fly to the safety of the Australian base. White himself touted the feat as "a taxi-ing record". The following month, he undertook a search for Major General George Kemball, whose seaplane had gone missing between Kut and Aziziyeh; White located the missing plane near a large Arab encampment, and despite being fired on by the tribesmen was able to rescue the general and transport him to Aziziyeh.On a mission in October 1915, he was forced to land owing to engine trouble and, rather than risk attempting repairs, taxied the aircraft some
Taxiing, also sometimes written "taxying", is the movement of an aircraft on the ground, under its own power, in contrast to towing or push-back where the aircraft is moved by a tug. The aircraft usually moves on wheels, but the term also includes aircraft with skis or floats.
Major Francis Charles Claypon Yeats-Brown, DFC was an officer in the British Indian army and the author of the memoir The Lives of a Bengal Lancer, for which he was awarded the 1930 James Tait Black Memorial Prize.
The Keystone Cops were fictional, humorously incompetent policemen, featured in silent film slapstick comedies produced by Mack Sennett for his Keystone Film Company between 1912 and 1917.
On 13 November 1915, White was captured on a mission to cut telegraph wires near Baghdad. After damaging their aircraft on landing, White and Yeats-Brown were fired on by Arabs and Turks; Yeats-Brown succeeded in destroying the wires while White held off their attackers with rifle fire. The men attempted to taxi their aircraft away but were overpowered and beaten by Arabs before being handed over to Turkish troops. White was mentioned in despatches in July 1916. He was initially imprisoned in Mosul, then in Afion Kara Hissar, enduring harsh conditions. In July 1918 he was being transported by rail to Constantinople when his train was wrecked and he escaped. Disguising himself as a Turk, he hid in a Ukrainian cargo ship berthed in Constantinople harbour. After a month the ship sailed for Odessa, where White remained another month using a fake Russian passport. His experience of the Soviets in Odessa helped inform his subsequent anti-communism. He then stowed away on a hospital ship bound for Bulgaria, and made his way to London in December. White was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross in June 1919. That December, he was again mentioned in despatches, for "valuable services whilst in captivity". He subsequently published an account of his wartime exploits as Guests of the Unspeakable.
While in London, White met Vera Deakin, a Red Cross worker and daughter of former Australian Prime Minister Alfred Deakin, and soon became engaged to her. Departing Britain in September 1919, White returned to Australia via the United States and was discharged from the AIF in January 1920. He married Vera on 22 March at St John's Church of England in Toorak, despite the opposition of some of the Deakin family, including her brother-in-law Herbert Brookes. White, whose sympathies tended towards small business, considered Brookes a "business bully", hiding behind "the protection of capital". Also in 1920, White became managing director of his father's hardware company, C.J. White & Sons Pty Ltd. He continued to serve in the Citizen Military Forces (CMF, the renamed Citizen Forces), receiving promotion to major in July 1922, and commanding the 6th Battalion as a lieutenant colonel from March 1926 to March 1931. In 1923 he was awarded the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers' Decoration, which recognised twenty years of service. White enlisted as a special constable when Victorian police went on strike in November that year; he would later express support for groups such as the New Guard.
White ran as a Nationalist for the House of Representatives seat of Maribyrnong in the 1925 federal elections, but lost to the sitting Labor member, James Fenton, 19,483 votes to 28,621. August 1929. He defeated his only opponent, Independent Nationalist Frederick Francis, with 28,642 votes to 16,063, to succeed retiring member William Watt. White used his maiden speech in parliament to push for construction of the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. In the federal election held that October, he defeated the Labor contender, Donald Cameron, 31,700 votes to 22,445. The United Australia Party (UAP) came to power in the December 1931 federal elections; White was returned by a margin of 30,294.In 1927, he failed to win the Victorian Legislative Assembly seat of Prahran. After the Nationalists declined to endorse him as a candidate for the Senate the following year, he won the seat of Balaclava at a by-election held on 3
In January 1933, White was appointed Minister for Trade and Customs in Joseph Lyons' first Ministry, replacing Henry Gullett, who had stood down due to ill-health.White had given up the directorship of C.J. White & Sons the previous year. Although he personally favoured protectionism, his portfolio was responsible for reducing tariffs, as well as attempting to increase trade with Britain as opposed to the United States and Japan. He was also in charge of book and film censorship; for the latter he established an advisory board, chaired by Robert Garran, to make recommendations to him. In the September 1934 federal elections, White retained Balaclava by a margin 25,769 votes. That year he became Australian chairman of the Royal Life Saving Society, serving until 1951; he was also an active supporter of such organisations as Legacy and the Royal Flying Doctor Service. Vera White, who had been appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for her wartime work, also pursued philanthropic activities, holding management or committee roles with the Royal Children's Hospital, the Victorian Society for Crippled Children and Adults, and the Red Cross.
The October 1937 federal elections saw White returned by a margin of 20,954. ... It may yet mean peace but at what price?" He called for stronger preparations at home in case of war, including the introduction of conscription. On 8 November 1938, White resigned his portfolio, having discovered that Lyons had established an inner cabinet from which he was excluded; he was succeeded as Minister for Trade and Customs by John Perkins. Lyons' response in parliament to White's resignation publicly highlighted the divisions in the UAP. White stood for the UAP's leadership after Lyons' death the following year, but was eliminated early in the balloting; Robert Menzies narrowly defeated Billy Hughes in the final ballot.In July 1938, he represented Australia at an inter-governmental conference on Jewish refugees held at Évian, France, to discuss the growing numbers of Jewish emigrants seeking to leave Germany and occupied territories. He sympathised with refugees he spoke to during the conference, but hedged his offer of support, saying that, "As we have no real racial problem, we are not desirous of importing one by encouraging any scheme of large-scale foreign migration". Australia agreed to accept 15,000 refugees over three years. White's reaction to the Australian government's support for the Munich Agreement was to diarise: "I think we should hang our heads that we did not stand up to the bully of Europe
Following the outbreak of the Second World War, White transferred from the CMF to the Citizen Air Force, the active reserve of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), 1 Initial Training School (ITS) at Somers, Victoria. In this capacity he was responsible for the first group of Empire Air Training Scheme (EATS) trainees in Australia, thirty-five student aircrew. In the September 1940 federal election, White defeated Labor's Charles Sandford with 43,876 votes to 17,135. He relinquished command of No. 1 ITS in September 1941; at this time the school was training over 900 pupils. White was subsequently posted to England, initially to oversaw the Australian contingent at RAF Station Bournemouth. Arriving at Bournemouth as a wing commander in November 1941, he proceeded to organise EATS graduates from Australia into their own distinct section under the RAF's No. 3 Personnel Reception Centre. He also facilitated improvements in accommodation, services, and postings for the Australians at Bournemouth. In June 1942, he became RAAF Liaison Officer at RAF Flying Training Command, where he worked to improve procedures for commissioning and promoting Australian airmen.as a flight lieutenant (temporary squadron leader). He took leave from parliament in April 1940 and was appointed the inaugural commanding officer of No.
By May 1943, the Australian contingent at Bournemouth had outgrown its facilities and transferred to Brighton, where White was given command of the RAF station. October 1944. The same month, he attended the conference that resulted in the establishment of the Liberal Party, which succeeded the UAP; the new party was officially launched under Robert Menzies' leadership in August 1945. In June 1946, now as the Liberal member for Balaclava, White unsuccessfully called for a royal commission into problems of command in the RAAF during the war. He retained Balaclava by a majority of over 13,000 in the September 1946 federal election, defeating Labor's Maurice Ashkanasy.According to the Parliamentary Library of Australia, White also "surreptitiously flew on several sorties as a second-pilot" while in Britain. He paid tribute to the men of EATS with the narrative poem Sky Saga. White returned to Australia to contest the August 1943 federal election, defeating Labor's John Barry with 38,698 votes to 28,271. He served at the RAAF Staff School, located at Mount Martha, Victoria, until his retirement as an honorary group captain; he was medically discharged on 28
A boundary redistribution prior to the December 1949 federal elections reduced Balaclava from 84,000 voters to just under 43,000; White retained the seat against the Labor contender by a margin of 14,361. 24 (City of Adelaide) Squadron at Mallala, South Australia.Following the Liberal Party victory, White was appointed Minister for Air and Minister for Civil Aviation, despite his personal animosity towards Menzies, which partly stemmed from the latter's failure to serve in the First World War. He took over his portfolios from Arthur Drakeford, who had held them for eight years. In January 1950, White and the Minister for Supply and Development, Richard Casey, announced that the English Electric Canberra had been selected to replace the RAAF's Avro Lincoln bombers and that the new jet would be manufactured by the Government Aircraft Factory in Victoria. White's term as Minister for Air saw the deployment of RAAF squadrons to the Korean War and the Malayan Emergency in mid-1950, and the establishment of the Women's Royal Australian Air Force, the successor organisation to the wartime Women's Auxiliary Australian Air Force, that November. The following year he gave his approval for the manufacture of a Rolls Royce-engined licensed version of the North American F-86 Sabre jet fighter for the RAAF, and played a major part in the controversial decision to replace the long-serving Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal George Jones, with an RAF officer, Air Vice Marshal (later Air Chief Marshal Sir) Donald Hardman. White also sought to strengthen the Citizen Air Force, and personally ordered the establishment of No.
White secured his tenth election victory in Balaclava in the April 1951 federal election, defeating Labor's Arthur Lewis by 10,700 votes. June, he resigned from parliament to become Australian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, a position he held until 1956. He was succeeded as the member for Balaclava by Liberal Percy Joske, as Minister for Air by Philip McBride, and as Minister for Civil Aviation by Hubert Anthony. White was appointed a Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire in January 1952. As High Commissioner he advocated continued British migration to Australia and participated in the renewal of the assisted passage scheme between the two countries in 1954. He was succeeded by Sir Eric Harrison. After returning to Australia, White lived in Melbourne. He suffered from emphysema and on 13 October 1957 died of a heart attack at his home in South Yarra. Survived by his wife and four daughters, he was accorded a state funeral at St Paul's Cathedral, Melbourne, and interred at Point Lonsdale cemetery.On 21
The T.W. White Society, founded in 1982, sponsors an annual prize for thoracic research awarded through the Thoracic Society of Queensland.White's daughters donated his papers to the National Library of Australia in 1997 and 1998.
Air Marshal Sir Richard Williams, is widely regarded as the "father" of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). He was the first military pilot trained in Australia, and went on to command Australian and British fighter units in World War I. A proponent for air power independent of other branches of the armed services, Williams played a leading role in the establishment of the RAAF and became its first Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) in 1922. He served as CAS for thirteen years over three terms, longer than any other officer.
Air Commodore Arthur Henry Cobby, was an Australian military aviator. He was the leading fighter ace of the Australian Flying Corps during World War I, with 29 victories, in spite of the fact that he saw active service for less than a year.
The 1940 Canberra air disaster was an aircraft crash that occurred near Canberra, the capital of Australia, on 13 August 1940, during World War II. All ten people on board were killed: six passengers, including three members of the Australian Cabinet and the Chief of the General Staff; and four crew. The aircraft is believed to have stalled on its landing approach, when it was too low to recover.
No. 1 Squadron is a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) squadron headquartered at RAAF Base Amberley, Queensland. Controlled by No. 82 Wing, it is equipped with Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet multi-role fighters. The squadron was formed under the Australian Flying Corps in 1916 and saw action in the Sinai and Palestine Campaigns during World War I. It flew obsolete Royal Aircraft Factory B.E.2s, B.E.12s, Martinsyde G.100s and G.102s, as well as Airco DH.6s, Bristol Scouts and Nieuport 17s, before re-equipping with the R.E.8 in October 1917 and finally the Bristol Fighter in December. Its commanding officer in 1917–18 was Major Richard Williams, later known as the "Father of the RAAF". Disbanded in 1919, No. 1 Squadron was re-formed on paper as part of the RAAF in 1922, and re-established as an operational unit three years later.
Central Flying School (CFS) is a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) training unit, located at RAAF Base East Sale, Victoria. It operates the Pilatus PC-9 turboprop trainer. The school is responsible for training flight instructors, setting flying standards, and auditing flying practices. It is also home to the "Roulettes" aerobatic team. CFS was the first military aviation unit to be formed in Australia, in 1913, when its role was to provide basic flying training. Its current form dates from World War II, when it was re-established to train flying instructors for the Empire Air Training Scheme (EATS).
Elwyn Roy King, DSO, DFC was a fighter ace in the Australian Flying Corps (AFC) during World War I. He achieved twenty-six victories in aerial combat, making him the fourth highest-scoring Australian pilot of the war, and second only to Harry Cobby in the AFC. A civil pilot and engineer between the wars, he served in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) from 1939 until his death.
Air Marshal Sir George Jones, was a senior commander in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). He rose from private soldier in World War I to air marshal in 1948, and served as Chief of the Air Staff from 1942 to 1952, the longest continuous tenure of any RAAF chief. Jones was a surprise appointee to the Air Force's top role, and his achievements in the position were coloured by a divisive relationship during World War II with his nominal subordinate, the head of RAAF Command, Air Vice-Marshal William Bostock.
Air Marshal Sir Peter Roy Maxwell Drummond, was an Australian-born senior commander in the Royal Air Force (RAF). He rose from private soldier in World War I to air marshal in World War II. Drummond enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in 1914 and the following year saw service as a medical orderly during the Gallipoli Campaign. He joined the Royal Flying Corps in 1916 and became a fighter ace in the Middle Eastern theatre, where he was awarded the Military Cross and the Distinguished Service Order and Bar. Transferring to the RAF on its formation in 1918, he remained in the British armed forces for the rest of his life.
Air Marshal Sir John Patrick Joseph McCauley, KBE, CB was a senior commander in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). He served as Chief of the Air Staff from 1954 to 1957. A Duntroon graduate, McCauley spent four years in the Australian Military Forces before transferring to the RAAF in 1924. He was Director of Training from 1936 to 1938, and commanded engineering and flying training schools for the first eighteen months of World War II. Having been promoted to group captain in 1940, he was posted to Singapore in June 1941 to take charge of all RAAF units defending the area. He earned praise for his efforts in attacking invading Japanese forces before the fall of Singapore, and for his dedication in evacuating his men. After serving as Deputy Chief of the Air Staff in 1942–44, he was appointed to a senior operational role with the Royal Air Force's 2nd Tactical Air Force in Europe, where he saw out the rest of the war.
Air Vice Marshal Adrian Lindley Trevor Cole, CBE, DSO, MC, DFC was a senior commander in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). Joining the army at the outbreak of World War I, he transferred to the Australian Flying Corps in 1916 and flew with No. 1 Squadron in the Middle East and No. 2 Squadron on the Western Front. He became an ace, credited with victories over ten enemy aircraft, and earned the Military Cross and the Distinguished Flying Cross. In 1921, he was a founding member of the RAAF.
Air Commodore Arthur William Murphy, DFC, AFC, FRAeS was a senior engineer and aviator in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). He accompanied Henry Wrigley on the first trans-Australia flight from Melbourne to Darwin in 1919, a feat that earned both men the Air Force Cross. Murphy later played a leading role in military aircraft maintenance and production.
Garnet Francis Malley, was an Australian fighter ace of World War I, credited with six aerial victories. He was an aviation adviser to Chiang Kai-shek's government in China during the 1930s, and an intelligence officer in World War II.
Henry Aloysius Petre, DSO, MC was an English solicitor who became Australia's first military aviator and a founding member of the Australian Flying Corps, the predecessor of the Royal Australian Air Force. Born in Essex, Petre forsook his early legal career to pursue an interest in aviation, building his own aeroplane and gaining employment as an aircraft designer and pilot. In 1912, he answered the Australian Defence Department's call for pilots to form an aviation school, and was commissioned as a lieutenant in the Australian Military Forces. The following year, he chose the site of the country's first air base at Point Cook, Victoria, and established its inaugural training institution, the Central Flying School, with Eric Harrison.
Eric Harrison was an Australian aviator who made the country's first military flight, and helped lay the groundwork for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). Born in Victoria, he was a flying instructor in Britain when, in 1912, he answered the Australian Defence Department's call for pilots to form an aviation school. Along with Henry Petre, he established Australia's first air base at Point Cook, Victoria, and its inaugural training unit, the Central Flying School (CFS), before making his historic flight in March 1914. Following the outbreak of World War I, when Petre went on active service with the Mesopotamian Half Flight, Harrison took charge of instructing student pilots of the Australian Flying Corps at CFS.
Roy Cecil Phillipps, MC & Bar, DFC was an Australian fighter ace of World War I. He achieved fifteen victories in aerial combat, four of them in a single action on 12 June 1918. A grazier between the wars, he joined the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in 1940 and was killed in a plane crash the following year.
On 29 September 1940, a mid-air collision occurred over Brocklesby, New South Wales, Australia. The accident was unusual in that the aircraft involved, two Avro Ansons of No. 2 Service Flying Training School RAAF, remained locked together after colliding, and then landed safely. The collision stopped the engines of the upper Anson, but those of the machine underneath continued to run, allowing the aircraft to keep flying. Both navigators and the pilot of the lower Anson bailed out. The pilot of the upper Anson found that he was able to control the interlocked aircraft with his ailerons and flaps, and made an emergency landing in a nearby paddock. All four crewmen survived the incident, and the upper Anson was repaired and returned to flight service.
Vance Drummond, was a New Zealand–born Australian pilot who fought in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. He initially saw service in the New Zealand military, but joined the Royal Australian Air Force in 1949 and graduated as a sergeant pilot in 1951. Posted to No. 77 Squadron in Korea, he flew Gloster Meteor jet fighters and earned the US Air Medal for his combat skills. He was shot down by a Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 in December 1951 and imprisoned for almost two years. After returning to Australia he converted to CAC Sabre jets and in December 1961 became a flight commander with No. 75 Squadron; he subsequently led the squadron's Black Diamonds aerobatic team, and was awarded the Air Force Cross in 1965.
Louis Thomas Spence, DFC & Bar was a fighter pilot and squadron commander in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). During World War II he flew with No. 3 Squadron, earning the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), and commanded No. 452 Squadron, receiving a Mention in Despatches. He led No. 77 Squadron in the opening months of the Korean War, and was awarded a bar to his DFC, as well as the US Legion of Merit and the US Air Medal, for his leadership.
| Minister for Trade and Customs |
| Minister for Air |
| Minister for Civil Aviation |
Hubert Lawrence Anthony
|Parliament of Australia|
| Member for Balaclava |
Last held by: Jack Beasley
| Australian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom |
Sir Eric Harrison