Some many members of No II(AC) Squadron have been honoured throughout the years, too many to list here just yet, but we explore five notable awards here:
Arthur Hammond served as an Observer on II Sqn during the latter stages of the First World War and following a particularly fierce engagement with the enemy was recommended for an award by the Squadron Commander, Major Snow. Given that he already held the Military Cross for a previous act of bravery it was a remarkable achievement.
Major Snow's recommendation read as follows:
For most conspicuous gallantry and coolness in Aerial Fighting against greatly superior numbers.
"On 27 March 1918 whilst flying with his pilot 2nd Lt. A A McLeod east of Albert attacking hostile troops and transport with machine gun fire and bombs from 5000 feet, he was attacked by eight enemy Scouts (Triplanes) which dived from all directions firing their front gun. Lt. Hammond fired bursts at each machine in turn shooting three of them down out of control.
During this engagement he was wounded six times. He was continuing fire on the hostile machines, when a bullet penetrated the petrol tank setting the machine on fire. The pilot, 2nd Lt. McLeod, although wounded five times, with great skill and coolness managed to climb on to the left hand bottom plane and controlled the machine from the side of the fuselage, sideslipping to the ground. Lt. Hammond despite the wounds and surrounded by flames, continued fire upon the enemy machines whilst descending. The machine crashed in "No Man's Land". 2nd Lt. McLeod managed to extricate Lt. Hammond from the flames and heated bombs, and dragged him to a shell hole, from which they were both subsequently rescued by our Infantry under heavy fire from the enemy lines.
This Officer has always set a most magnificent example to other Observers of his Squadron."
William Hammond was awarded a Bar to the Military Cross on 2nd March 1918.
For a fuller account of this engagement click here and read the events which were recorded and led to 2nd Lt. McLeod being awarded the Victoria Cross.