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Name: Robert John Orton Compston
Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) and 2 Bars
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
Robert Compston [Thanks to Dr. David G. Styles]
Country: England
Rank: Major
Service: Royal Naval Air Service
Royal Air Force
Units: 8N (RNAS)
40 (RAF)
Victories: 25
Born: 09 January 1898
Place of Birth: Farnham, Hampshire
Died: 28 January 1962
Place of Death:  
 
 
The son of a vicar, Robert John Orton Compston joined the Royal Naval Air Service in August 1915. Posted to 8 Naval Squadron in 1916, he was wounded in action in September 1917 and scored 25 victories before assuming command of 40 Squadron in August 1918.
 
Distinguished Service Cross (DSC)
Flt. Lieut. Robert John Orton Compston, R.N.A.S.
   For conspicuous skill and gallantry during the past nine months, in particular when attached to the Royal Flying Corps, when he had numerous engagements with enemy aircraft, and certainly destroyed one.
 
Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) First Bar
Flt. Cdr. Robert John Orton Compston, D.S.C., R.N.A.S.
   For gallantry in action and for very good work in driving away German artillery aeroplanes.
   On the 12th June, 1917, with three other machines, he attacked six hostile scouts. He got close to one, and shot it down out of control.
   On the 16th June, 1917, he attacked and brought down a two-seater Aviatik.
   On the 3rd July, 1917, he attacked two Aviatiks, which he drove down and forced to land.
 
Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) Second Bar
Flt. Cdr. Robert John Orton Compston, D.S.C., R.N.A.S.
   For ability and determination when leading offensive patrols, in which he displays entire disregard of personal danger.
   On the 1st January, 1918, he observed a new type twin-tailed two-seater enemy machine, which he attacked, firing a good many rounds at point blank range. The enemy machine dived, but was again attacked and went down vertically with his engine full on. The wings came off, and the machine was observed to crash. Later in the day Flt. Cdr. Compston observed two formations of ten and five Albatross scouts respectively. He attacked one of the enemy machines and sent it down in a flat spin and falling over sideways completely out of control.
   On numerous other occasions Flt. Cdr. Compston has destroyed or driven down enemy machines completely out of control, and has frequently had more than one successful engagement in the same day.
 
Victories
Date Time Unit Aircraft Opponent Location
1 26 Dec 1916 1000 8N Nieuport Scout (8750) Albatros C (OOC) N of Cambrai
2 05 Apr 1917 1245 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) Halberstadt D.II (OOC) SE of La Bassée
3 30 Apr 1917 0645 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) Aviatik C (OOC) E of Douai
4 30 Apr 1917 0700 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) Aviatik C (OOC) W of Douai
5 02 May 1917 0950 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) C (OOC) NE of Douai
6 10 May 1917 0730 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) Albatros C (OOC) 1 E of Douai
7 03 Jun 1917 0745-0905 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) C (OOC) Vitry-Douai
8 04 Jun 1917 0945 8N Sopwith Triplane (N5471) C (DESF) 2 E of Lens
9 12 Jun 1917 0950 8N Sopwith Triplane (N6299) Albatros D.III (OOC) Lens
10 16 Jun 1917 0830 8N Sopwith Triplane (N6299) C (CAP) 3 Loos-E Lens
11 08 Nov 1917 0820 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) Albatros D.III (DESF) Oppy
12 22 Nov 1917 1055 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) LVG C (OOC) Vitry en Artois
13 05 Dec 1917 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) Rumpler C (OOC)  
14 06 Dec 1917 1125 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) DFW C (OOC) 4 Drocourt-Douai
15 28 Dec 1917 1240 8N Sopwith Camel (B6319) DFW C (DESF) Harnes-Pont a Vendin
16 01 Jan 1918 1128 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) Hannover C (CAP) 5 Fampoux
17 01 Jan 1918 1530 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) Albatros D.V (OOC) 6 Neuvireuil
18 03 Jan 1918 1005 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) DFW C (DES) 4 Arras
19 03 Jan 1918 1120 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) DFW C (OOC) Epmay Wood
20 06 Jan 1918 1150 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) Albatros D.V (OOC) 7 Quiery la Motte
21 02 Feb 1918 1130 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) C (DES) 8 Ostricourt-Douai
22 02 Feb 1918 1215 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) Albatros D.V (OOC) 8 Carvin
23 03 Feb 1918 1125 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) DFW C (OOC) SE of Douai
24 03 Feb 1918 1225 8N Sopwith Camel (B6340) DFW C (DES) 9 Sallaumines
25 18 Feb 1918 1115 8N Sopwith Camel (B7203) Albatros D.V (OOC) Douai

1 Shared with FSL E A Bennetts (N5442)
2 Shared with FLt Ronald Thornely, FSL E A Bennetts (N5492)
3 Shared with FLt Ronald Thornely
4 Shared with FSL William Jordan
5 Shared with FSL Gerald Cooper, Capt Edward Mannock
6 Shared with FSL A J Dixon (B6319)
7 Shared with FSL William Jordan
8 Shared with FSL Reginald Johns, FSL Harold Day, FSL W F Crundall (B6356)
9 Shared with FSL W F Crundall (B6356), FSL Edward Johnstone
 
Books
Sopwith Camel Aces of World War 1
Norman Franks / Softcover / Osprey Publishing (March 25, 2003)
 
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