Sergeant Richard Arthur George HALLIDAY

Service No: 407426
Born: Adelaide SA, 16 March 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 12 October 1940
Unit: No. 457 Squadron, RAF Redhill, Surrey
Died: Air Operations (No. 457 Squadron Spitfire aircraft AA851), off Ramsgate, Kent, 9 May 1942, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Aylesham Cemetery, Kent
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Richard Blair Halliday and Maggie Muriel Halliday; husband of Una Joyce Halliday, of Springton, South Australia.
Roll of Honour: Port Lincoln SA
Remembered: Panel 106, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

No. 457 had flown, during its first full month of operations (April 1942), 376 sorties of which all except forty-four were flights involving penetration of enemy territory. The Fighter Command offensive continued on much the same scale during May, and in the first nine days, the Australians flew 7 sweeps and 6 Circuses besides providing a further 12 aircraft for coastal patrols. The pattern of operations, the areas patrolled, even the Circus targets, were in general the same as during April and on only two Circuses and one sweep did No. 457 meet any opposition. The sweep encounter on 4th May was a fleeting engagement but, on 1st and 9th May, bitter German attacks were made and on each occasion two Spitfires were shot down.

Extract from Herington, J. (John) (406545) Air War Against Germany and Italy 1939-1943, Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 1954 – Page 348

On 9 May 1942, Spitfire AA851 was one of 12 aircraft detailed to provide cover for a bombing attack on Bruges, Belgium. Sergeant Halliday advised by wireless that he and his aircraft were hit, but he appeared to have the intention of bringing his aircraft home. Finding this was impossible, he baled out near the coast in the sea off Ramsgate. His body was picked up by naval authorities based at Deal. It was considered that he had probably drowned.

The four Spitfire aircraft lost in this period were:

Sergeant Andrew Francis Peacock (403371) lost 1 May 1942
Flight Lieutenant Harold Leslie North DFC (41608) (RAFVR) lost 1 May 1942
Sergeant Richard Arthur George Halliday (407246) lost 9 May 1942
Sergeant William James Smith (400942) lost 9 May 1942


Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 163/120/449


Ilbery, P.L.T. (Peter Leslie Thomas) (422957) Hatching an Air Force: 2SFTS, 5SFTS, 1BFTS Uranquinty and Wagga Wagga, Banner Books Maryborough QLD 4650, 2002

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