Edwin Cole (RAF officer)

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Edwin Stuart Travis Cole
Born (1895-12-26)26 December 1895
Bristol, England
Died 1984 (aged 88–89)
Service/branch British Army
Royal Air Force
Years of service 1916–1918
1939–1954
Rank Squadron Leader
Unit No. 60 Squadron RFC
No. 1 Squadron RFC
Awards Military Cross

Squadron Leader Edwin Stuart Travis Cole MC (26 December 1895–1984) was a British World War I flying ace credited with eight aerial victories.[1]

World War I service[edit]

Cole was a mechanical engineer from Bristol,[1] who on 14 December 1915 was awarded with Aviator's Certificate No. 2160 on Caudron biplanes at the Ruffy-Baumann School at Hendon.[2][3] He was commissioned as a probationary second lieutenant in the Royal Flying Corps on 29 April 1916,[4] was appointed a flying officer on 21 July,[5] and was confirmed in his rank in August.[6] On 15 September 1916, having been assigned to No. 60 Squadron to fly a Nieuport fighter, he scored his first victory.[1][7]

Reassigned to No. 1 Squadron, he once again flew a Nieuport. He triumphed twice in March 1917, and four times during Bloody April, including two observation balloons. On 1 May 1917, he and fellow ace Frank Sharpe captured a German Albatros D.III fighter at Roulers-Elverdinghe,[1] receiving promotion to lieutenant the same day.[8] Following this, Cole was withdrawn from action.[7]

On 6 July 1918 he was promoted to the temporary rank of captain.[9]

World War II service[edit]

His record lapses until 1939, when he agreed to let a garage in Downend be used for a first aid post and air raid shelter.[10] On 21 March 1939, he was commissioned as a pilot officer on probation in the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve.[11] On 31 August 1939, he was confirmed as a pilot officer and promoted to flying officer.[12]

Apparently unfit for flight duty, on 27 May 1940 he was transferred to General Duties.[13] On 27 May 1941, he was promoted to flight lieutenant.[14] On 1 July 1944, he was once again promoted, this time to temporary squadron leader.[15]

Post World War II[edit]

On 10 February 1954, Cole relinquished his reserve commission, with permission to retain the rank of squadron leader.[16]

Honours and awards[edit]

Military Cross
2nd Lt. Edwin Stewart Travis Cole, Royal Flying Corps (Special Reserve)
For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. On one occasion he, in a scout, attacked and brought down an enemy two-seater biplane. He has brought down two hostile balloons. He has at all times set a splendid example of courage and initiative.[17]

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ a b c d "Edwin Stuart Travis Cole". The Aerodrome. 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  2. ^ "Aviator's Certificates". Flight VII (865): 1017. 24 December 1915. Retrieved 3 October 2014. 
  3. ^ "1915 Aviators Certificates". Graces Guide. 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  4. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 29575. p. 4649. 9 May 1916.
  5. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 29710. p. 8110. 17 August 1916.
  6. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 29707. p. 8008. 11 August 1916.
  7. ^ a b Franks (2000), p.10.
  8. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 30112. p. 5502. 1 June 1917.
  9. ^ The London Gazette: no. 30793. p. 8203. 12 July 1918.
  10. ^ "Tenancy agreement DA39/154/10 (1939)". Gloucestershire Archives: Online Catalogue. 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  11. ^ The London Gazette: no. 34611. p. 2099. 21 March 1939.
  12. ^ The London Gazette: no. 34721. p. 7276. 31 October 1939.
  13. ^ The London Gazette: no. 34870. p. 3523. 11 June 1940.
  14. ^ The London Gazette: no. 35176. p. 3103. 30 May 1941.
  15. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 36618. p. 3400. 21 July 1944.
  16. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 40180. p. 3064. 25 May 1954.
  17. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 30135. p. 5987. 18 June 1917.
Bibliography