|Maurice Edmund Mealing|
21 July 1893|
High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, England
|Died||24 March 1918
|Unit||Shropshire Light Infantry
No. 15 Squadron RFC
No. 56 Squadron RFC
|Battles/wars||World War I|
While Mealing was originally an infantryman, he transferred into the Royal Flying Corps and was commissioned on 16 May 1916. He reported to 15 Squadron as an observer on 7 August, and remained with the unit until May 1917. He then received pilot's training, and joined 56 Squadron on 18 October as a Royal Aircraft Factory SE.5a pilot. He opened his victory roll on 30 November, destroying an Albatros D.III over Lesdain. On 10 December, he became a balloon buster when he destroyed an observation balloon.
He began 1918 with a victory on 25 January, and another on 17 February. Then, in March, while Mealing was on the brink of acedom, the German buildup toward their last offensive supplied him with numerous opportunities. Between 8 and 24 March, he collected ten more wins, including another balloon busted, a reconnaissance plane shared with Captain William Spurrett Fielding-Johnson and another two-seater downed while teamed with Second Lieutenant Harold Walkerdine, Lieutenant Henry John Burden, and three other British pilots. On 24 March, he was seen pursuing a pair of German two-seaters; another report had him standing waving next to his grounded airplane. He was never seen again. His Military Cross was awarded to him on 13 May 1918.
Awards and honors
- Citation for Military Cross (MC)
- 2nd Lt. (T./Capt.) Maurice Edmund Mealing, Shrops. L.I. and R.F.C.
- For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty in aerial fighting. He destroyed three enemy machines and drove three down out of control. He also drove down an enemy balloon in flames. He always showed a splendid spirit of courage, keenness and determination.
- Shores, Christopher F.; Franks, Norman L. R. & Guest, Russell (1990). Above the Trenches: a Complete Record of the Fighter Aces and Units of the British Empire Air Forces 1915–1920. London: Grub Street. ISBN 978-0-948817-19-9.
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