Halim Perdanakusuma

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Halim Perdanakusuma
Halim Perdanakusuma.jpg
Born (1922-11-18)18 November 1922
Sampang, Madura, Dutch East Indies
Died 14 December 1947(1947-12-14) (aged 25)
Tanjung Hantu, Malaysia
Buried at Kalibata Heroes Cemetery (6°15′26″S 106°50′47″E / 6.25722°S 106.84639°E / -6.25722; 106.84639Coordinates: 6°15′26″S 106°50′47″E / 6.25722°S 106.84639°E / -6.25722; 106.84639)
Allegiance Dutch East Indies (c. 1940 – 1945)
Indonesia (1945–1947)
Service/branch Navy of the Dutch East Indies
Indonesian Air Force
Years of service c. 1940 – 1947
Rank Air Vice-Marshal
Awards National Hero of Indonesia

Air Vice-Marshal Abdul Halim Perdanakusuma (18 November 1922 – 14 December 1947), better known as Halim Perdanakusuma, was an Indonesian airman and National Hero of Indonesia.

Biography[edit]

Perdanakusuma was born in Sampang, Madura, Dutch East Indies, on 18 November 1922.[1] After attending elementary and middle school at schools for native Indonesians,[2] he attended the Opleidingschool voor Inlandsche Ambtenaren (a school for the training of native officials) in Magelang.[3] However, he dropped out in his second year and joined the Naval Academy of Surabaya to answer the Dutch colonial government's call for militia.[4][5] After finishing the academy, he spent some time in the Dutch Colonial Navy's information department.[4]

At the time of the Japanese invasion of the Indies in 1942, against which he had been trained to fight, Perdanakusuma was in Britain, training in navigation with the Royal Canadian Air Force; as part of his training, he flew on 44 missions throughout Europe, including flying Avro Lancasters in bombing missions over Nazi Germany.[3][4][5]

After the end of World War II, Perdanakusuma returned to newly independent Indonesia.[3] He joined the nascent military (then called the Tentara Keamanan Rakyat; Military for the People's Safety) under Commodore Suryadi Suryadarma; together with Agustinus Adisucipto and Abdul Rahman Saleh, he was tasked with organizing the Indonesian Air Force.[6]

In early 1947 Perdanakusuma was promoted to air commodore and tasked with establishing a branch of the air force in Bukittinggi, West Sumatra; to complete his task he penetrated the Dutch blockade of the island.[2][6][7] Air Officer Iswahyudi was also tasked to assist with managing the base.[4] At the time, the various air units in Sumatra were managed individually and under the command of the army; Perdanakusuma and Iswahyudi proceeded to unite them into their own branch.[8]

On 17 August 1947, he led paratroops into Borneo. That December, Perdanakusuma was ordered to fly to Thailand with Iswahyudi to pick up medical supplies. On their return trip on 14 December, the Avro Anson they were flying stalled, leading it to crash outside of Tanjung Hantu, Malaysia, killing both.[7] Perdanakusuma's body was originally buried in Lumut, Malaysia, but later relocated to Kalibata Heroes Cemetery in 1975.[9]

Legacy[edit]

Perdanakusuma was declared a National Hero of Indonesia on 9 August 1975 with Presidential Decree Number 063/TK/Year 1975;[6][9] with this declaration came a posthumous promotion to air vice marshall.[8] Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in Jakarta is named after him.[9]

References[edit]

Footnotes
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