Danish WW2 Pilots

Peter Møller

(1916 - 1941)

Peter Møller joins the RAF fairly early in the war at a time when other Danes have difficulties in being accepted for service. In February 1940, 6 weeks before Denmark is occupied by the Germans he is promoted to Pilot Officer on probation. He is killed in March 1941 in East Africa.

Peter Møller is on 15 January 1916 in Frederikshavn. He is the son of merchant Laurits Peter Leopold and Jennie Childs Møller (née Smith). [1]

He is naturalised as British Subject in 1938 and joins the Royal Air Force before the war. [2]

On 8 July 1939 he is granted a short-service commission as Acting Pilot Officer on probation for six years on the active list. He is promoted to Pilot Officer on probation on 20 February 1940 and confirmed in this appointment on 15 May 1940. [3]

With No. 203 Squadron in East Africa

On 19 January 1941, Commonwealth forces advance from Sudan into Eritrea in an attempt to evict the German Afrika Korps from these areas, where they had advanced earlier that same year. Having gained air superiority, Blenheims of among other squadrons, No. 203 Squadron, Royal Air Force, from Aden, were engaged in the bombing of Italian troops and aircraft. The Blenheim Mk. IV-F’s of No. 203 Squadron were armed with light bombs and under-slung machine guns. [4]

In the coming weeks several aircraft of No. 203 Squadron are lost as the Allied are engaged in fierce fighting on the ground. In late March 1941, Peter Møller is killed while on a long-range sortie over Ethiopia. On 20 February 1941 he had been promoted from Pilot Officer to Flying Officer.[5]

The Last Mission

Taking off on 28 March 1941 at 0705 hours from Khormaksar, Aden, in Blenheim Mk. IV (T2255) of No. 203 Squadron he carries out a reconnaissance mission over the Awash-Adama area of Ethiopia. The aircraft is hit by flak and crashes near Awash and the crew of three is killed. Apart from Peter Møller its Sergeant G.E. Salisbury (751754) and Sergeant W.A. Davidson (749590). [6]

Peter Møller is commemorated on Column 241 of the Alamein War Memorial in Egypt. [7]

Sources

  1. www.cwgc.dk, parish record of Frederikshavn
  2. NA: HO 334/151
  3. Flight, 3 August 1939, London Gazette, 34838 and 34892
  4. Warner, 2002
  5. Warner, 2002, Henk Welting
  6. Warner, 2002, Henk Welting
  7. www.cwgc.org