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Remembered Today:

William Hayland Wilson RNAS


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In the attached image of these four pipe smokers, the men on the left and right are well known - Charles Rumney Samson and his brother WL 'Bill' Samson.   I believe the other two to be a Captain Edwards (next to 'Bill' Samson) and William Hayland Wilson (wearing the flying helmet, and apparently known as 'Old Bill') next to CR. 

 

I am guessing that this is 'Old Bill' Wilson because CR Samson once described him as being 'quite our heaviest pilot', and that description would seem to fit with this man's somewhat rotund physique.

 

Could anyone confirm my hunch?

Samson, Charles Rumney (left).jpg

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The image appears in Samson's book 'Fights and Flights' (p.268) where it is labelled: "THE AUTHOR, A MAJOR IN THE R.E., EDWARDS AND W.L. SAMSON" . I assume Samson approved or provided the caption.

Edited by horatio2
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14 hours ago, horatio2 said:

The image appears in Samson's book 'Fights and Flights' (p.268) where it is labelled: "THE AUTHOR, A MAJOR IN THE R.E., EDWARDS AND W.L. SAMSON" . I assume Samson approved or provided the caption.

 

Thanks H.  It seems my hunch was wrong!   Edwards, however, could be Captain IAE Edwards, R.G.A. - but I'm still checking on him.

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Alan Bentley

Captain Edwards flew as an observer in Samsons Sq.

 

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Pete, that's a terrific copy of the photo! 

I believe Edwards to be Ivo Arthur Exley Edwards. Total of 51 flights as observer with 3 Wing RNAS between 14 August and 29 December 1915.

 

Douglas Bader married his daughter, I just learnt that by Googling his name.

 

I don't think the RE major is the pilot Wilson, though.

 

A Major J.H. Gibbon (RFA) had 3 flights as observer in October 1915, perhaps that's him?

Edited by b3rn
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21 hours ago, Alan Bentley said:

Captain Edwards flew as an observer in Samsons Sq.

 

 

20 hours ago, b3rn said:

Pete, that's a terrific copy of the photo! 

I believe Edwards to be Ivo Arthur Exley Edwards. Total of 51 flights as observer with 3 Wing RNAS between 14 August and 29 December 1915.

 

Douglas Bader married his daughter, I just learnt that by Googling his name.

 

I don't think the RE major is the pilot Wilson, though.

 

A Major J.H. Gibbon (RFA) had 3 flights as observer in October 1915, perhaps that's him?

 

Alan and Bern,

 

Gentlemen, your confirmations re Edwards are most welcome.  I didn't have his Christian names, so thanks for that Bern.   I've now found details of William Hayland Williams ('Old Bill')  see below: 

J.H. Gibbon could well be a possibility for the chap beside C.R. Samson - if it weren't for the fact that in Fights and Flights he is  described as 'A Major in the R.E.'   Mind you, if Samson couldn't recall his name, his Regiment might have been a guess as well!

 

http://ozrnas.org.au/The Men/W/WILSON WH.html

Edited by pete-c
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