Gerald Frank Anderson

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Gerald Frank Anderson
Born24 February 1898
Newcastle, Natal Province, South Africa
Died23 August 1984
Hove, England
UnitNo. 88 Squadron RAF
AwardsOrder of the British Empire
Distinguished Flying Cross

Lieutenant Gerald Frank Anderson OBE, DFC was a South African born flying ace. During World War I, he was accredited with eight aerial victories.

In later life, he went into business, then served in Her Majesty's Foreign Service. He was also famed as a creator of chess puzzles.

Early life[edit]

Gerald Frank Anderson was born in Newcastle, Natal Province, South Africa on 24 February 1898.[1]

World War I[edit]

See also Aerial victory standards of World War I

Anderson served in 88 Squadron during World War I as the pilot of a two-seater combat airplane, a Bristol F.2 Fighter. He scored three aerial victories personally, with the front machine gun, while the other five victories to his credit were scored by one or another of his observers. These eight victories were scored between 17 July and 30 October 1918, amounting to two Germany airplanes set afire and destroyed and six driven down out of control.[1]

For the 30 October air battle, during which both Anderson and his observer were wounded, Anderson was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.[1] When gazetted postwar, the Distinguished Flying Cross citation read:

On 30th October this officer was one of an offensive patrol that attacked fifty enemy machines. Six of the latter concentrated their attack on Lt. Anderson, and would have inevitably destroyed his machine had it not been for the exceptionally able manner in which he manoeuvred and fought. Although both he and his observer were wounded and the machine badly damaged, he succeeded with rare courage and skill in shooting down one and keeping the remainder at a distance. Eventually he brought his machine safely to ground about half a mile within our lines."[2]

Post World War I[edit]

Anderson was transferred to the unemployed list of the Royal Air Force on 1 February 1919[3]

Details of his postwar life are sketchy. Avocationally, he became a highly skilled chess player, known for composing chess problems as early as 1919. He also played against Alexander Alekhine in 1946 in Lisbon.[4]

Voctionally, he seems to have gone into business, because on 25 June 1932 he was appointed as a liquidator of Parkhill Publicity Limited.[5]

On 18 December 1953, he was appointed an Officer in Her Majesty's Foreign Service.[6] One of his diplomatic posts was Washington, D.C.[4]

On 1 January 1959, while serving as Second Secretary of Her Majesty's Embassy in Washington, D.C., Gerald Frank Anderson was inducted into the Order of the British Empire.[7]

On 5 April 1971, Anderson's wife Lilian Madge died in Rapallo, Italy.[8]

Gerald Frank Anderson died in Hove, England on 23 August 1983.[9]

End notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Above the Trenches, p. 51.
  2. ^ Supplement to the London Gazette, 8 February 1919, p. 2034. Retrieved 18 October 2011.
  3. ^ The London Gazette, 16 September 1919, p. 11590;1986-12-31/exact=C.+P.+O.+Bartlett/start=1. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
  4. ^ a b Kavalek, Lubomir (3 August 2009). "CHESS". The Washington Post. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  5. ^ "The London Gazette" (PDF). 12 July 1932. p. 4577. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  6. ^ "The London Gazette" (PDF). The London Gazette. 25 March 1955. p. 1780. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  7. ^ "Supplement to the London Gazette" (PDF). 30 December 1958. pp. 20–21. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  8. ^ "The London Gazette" (PDF). London Gazette (45377). 25 May 1971. p. 5526. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
  9. ^ GameKnot: club forum - Today In Chess History, page #3


  • Above the Trenches: A Complete Record of the Fighter Aces and Units of the British Empire Air Forces 1915–1920 Christopher F. Shores, Norman L. R. Franks, Russell Guest. Grub Street, 1990. ISBN 0-948817-19-4, ISBN 978-0-948817-19-9.

External links[edit]