LEST WE FORGET

Flying Officer Gordon Leslie BLAND DFC

Service No: 407519
Born: Adelaide SA, 18 December 1916
Enlisted in the RAAF: 9 November 1940
Unit: No. 1 Operational Training Unit, RAAF Station East Sale VIC
Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), 9 May 1944 (Citation title: No. 100 Squadron)
Died: Illness, Melbourne VIC, 13 November 1944, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Springvale War Cemetery, Melbourne VIC
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Harry George and Dorothy Ellen Bland; husband of Kathleen Bland, of Tailem Bend, South Australia.
Roll of Honour: St Peters SA
Remembered: Panel 112, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

DFC Citation: “Warrant Officer Bland was posted to No 100 GR/B Squadron on 24 July 1943 and since that date has completed 57 operational sorties including 16 strikes. He has participated in seven attacks at night in Rabaul which, despite heavy opposition, he succeeded in dropping all his bombs in the target area. On two successive days he bombed Gasmata from a height of appro x 1,500 feet in spite of heavy and accurate antiaircraft defences. By his unwavering courage, initiative and complete disregard of his own safety while flying in operations against the enemy, Warrant Officer Bland has contributed considerably to the high morale and fighting spirit of his Squadron.” (London Gazette 9 May 1944 Page 2123)

Flying Officer Bland (Pilot) was admitted to No. 6 RAAF Hospital, Heidelberg, on 25 October 1944 with a serious illness diagnosed as Pyrexia. He died at 1610 hours on 13 November 1944.

References:

Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/5/750

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