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Today in History

Name: Alexander Augustus Norman Dudley "Jerry" Pentland
Military Cross (MC)
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
"Jerry" Pentland
Country: Australia
Rank: Captain
Service: Royal Flying Corps
Royal Air Force
Units: 16, 19, 29, 87
Victories: 23
Born: 05 August 1894
Place of Birth: Maitland, New South Wales
Died: 1983
Place of Death: New South Wales
Alexander Augustus Norman Dudley Pentland, of Terrigal, New South Wales, joined the Australian Imperial Force in March 1915. He served as a machine gunner with the 12th Light Horse Regiment at Gallipoli but contracted enteric fever in September 1915. A hospital ship took him to England where he was discharged in February 1916. When he recovered he joined the Royal Flying Corps. He scored his first victory as a two-seater pilot in June 1916. Posted to 19 Squadron, flying SPADs, he scored 9 victories in 1917. In 1918, with 87 Squadron, he scored 13 victories flying the Sopwith Dolphin. Post-war, he returned to home and served with the Royal Australian Air Force for two years before leaving to pursue a career in civil aviation. In 1940, he rejoined the R.A.A.F as a squadron leader and served as an instructor and commanding officer of 1 Rescue and Communication Flight, earning the Air Force Cross.
Military Cross (MC)
T./2nd Lt. Alexander Augustus Norman Pentland, Gen. List and R.F.C.
   For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. On a recent occasion he flew to an aerodrome fifteen miles behind the enemy lines, descended to within twenty feet of the ground, and fired into eight hostile machines. On his return journey he attacked a train with considerable effect from a low altitude. He has in addition brought down several enemy machines, and has always set a splendid example of fearlessness and devotion to duty in attacking enemy balloons and troops on the ground.
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
Lt. (T./Capt.) Alexander Augustus Norman Pentland, M.C.
   A gallant flight commander, who in the last three months has destroyed two enemy machines and driven down four out of control. Recently, whilst on special patrol, he, single-handed, attacked four enemy aeroplanes; having driven down one out of control, he engaged the leader, damaged his engine, and compelled him to glide to his lines. One of the remaining machines followed the leader, but he attacked the other and drove it down in a steep dive.
Date Time Unit Aircraft Opponent Location
1 09 Jun 1916 16 B.E.2c (4077) 1 Fokker E (DES) Habourdin
2 20 Jul 1917 0625 19 SPAD Albatros C (DES) 2 Houthoulst Forest
3 12 Aug 1917 1500 19 SPAD (B1660) Albatros D.III (OOC) Menin
4 20 Aug 1917 0625 19 SPAD (B3620) Albatros C (OOC) 3 SE of Houthoulst Forest
5 26 Aug 1917 0540 19 SPAD (B3620) DFW C (DES) 4 Moorseele
6 31 Aug 1917 1810 19 SPAD (B3620) Albatros D.V (OOC) E of Moorslede
7 11 Sep 1917 1315 19 SPAD (B3520) Rumpler C (DES) S of Bousbecque
8 15 Sep 1917 1225 19 SPAD (B3620) Rumpler C (OOC) SW of Zillebeke Lake
9 16 Sep 1917 1610 19 SPAD (B3620) Albatros D.V (OOC) Wervicq-Quesnoy
10 23 Sep 1917 1200 19 SPAD (B3620) Scout (OOC) Passchendaele
11 07 May 1918 1740 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C4157) Rumpler C (OOC) 5 Gheluvelt
12 30 May 1918 1210 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C3827) C (DES) Achiet le Petit
13 06 Jun 1918 0950 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C3827) Rumpler C (OOC) Amiens-Clery
14 18 Jun 1918 0840 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C3827) Rumpler C (OOC) Donville
15 18 Jun 1918 0840 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C3827) Rumpler C (OOC) SSW of Arras
16 28 Jun 1918 0915 87 Sopwith Dolphin (D3718) Albatros D.V (OOC) N of Bapaume
17 01 Jul 1918 1025 87 Sopwith Dolphin (D3718) Rumpler C (DES) Loupart Wood
18 09 Aug 1918 1800 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C4162) Fokker D.VII (DES) Dernicourt
19 10 Aug 1918 0930 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C4162) Fokker D.VII (DES) Miséry
20 12 Aug 1918 1135 87 Sopwith Dolphin (D3718) Rumpler C (DES) Arras-Thelus
21 14 Aug 1918 0840 87 Sopwith Dolphin (C4158) Rumpler C (OOC) 6 Aveluy Wood
22 25 Aug 1918 0900 87 Sopwith Dolphin (D3718) DFW C (DES) Le Sars
23 25 Aug 1918 0925 87 Sopwith Dolphin (D3718) Fokker D.VII (DES) S of Guedecourt

1 Observer Capt W H Walker
2 Shared with Capt Frederick Sowrey
3 Shared with Lt H C Ainger (B3564), Capt Frederick Sowrey
4 Shared with Lt H C Ainger (B3616), Lt A E Boeree (B3520), Lt R L Graham (B3618), Lt John Candy
5 Shared with Lt L Murray-Stewart (C4156), Lt C K Oliver (C4163)
6 Shared with Lt D C Mangan (C8109)
Australian Air Ace
The Exploits of " Jerry" Pentland, MC, DFC, AFC; Charles Schaedel / Unknown Binding / Rigby
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