Anderson, Second Lieutenant Albert Mendelssohn

No 71 (Australian) Sqn RFC

Albert Anderson was a 23 year old Traveller born in Melbourne, and a former apprentice printer, when he enlisted in the AIF at Melbourne on 30 November 1915 and, after service in the 20th Castlemaine Depot Battalion, he transferred to the AFC in April 1916. He departed from Melbourne on HMAT A38 Ulysses on 25 October. On arrival in the UK he was posted to No 69 (Australian) Sqn, after which he underwent training as an aircraft rigger. Promotion to Sergeant came in February 1917. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the AFC in November after pilot training, and was posted to No 71 (Australian) Sqn on the Western Front on 15 December.

He was killed in an aircraft accident on 6 January 1918 when flying Sopwith Camel B5217 as part of a five aeroplane flight on a familiarisation mission on the Allied side of the Lines; his aeroplane collided with Camels flown by 2Lt J H Cash and 2Lt R H Curtiss. At about 1000 feet over Vermelles the two rearmost machines, B5217, flown by 2Lt A M Anderson, and B4623, flown by 2Lt R H Curtis, collided, and the two aeroplanes then fell on Lt Cash in B2474. The three Camels then fell on a slag heap between Béthune and Vermelles; all three airmen were killed.

2Lt A M Anderson is buried in Grave E.5 at Sailly-Labourse Communal Cemetery Extension, France.

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