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Air Vice Marshal Sir Cecil Bouchier (03150)


Photgraph of Cecil BouchierCecil Arthur            b: 14 Oct 1895            r: 26 Jun 1949                         d: 15 Jun 1979

KBE - 1 Jan 1953 (CBE - 1 Jan 1941, OBE - 23 Jun 1936), CB - 14 Jun 1945, DFC - 18 Nov 1919, MiD - 1 Jan 1941, MiD 1 Jan 1945, SA3SB - xx xxx xxxx, LoM (Cdr) - 9 Mar 1948.

For a list of foreign decoration abbreviations, click here

(Army):- DPet (624279): 17 Mar 1915, Gnr:  8 May 1915, DPet (624279): 7 Nov 1915, (T) 2 Lt: 2 Feb 1918,

(RAF):- 2 Lt (P): 1 Apr 1918, Act Capt: 1 Nov 1918, Fg Off: 1 Aug 1919 [1 Apr 1918], Flt Lt: 1 Jan 1926, Act Sqn Ldr: 1 Mar 1933, Sqn Ldr: 1 Aug 1935, Wg Cdr: 1 Jul 1938, (T) Gp Capt:1 Dec 1940, Act A/Cdre: 22 Jan 1943?, 22 Jul 1943, (T) A/Cdre: 1 Dec 1943, Gp Capt: 1 Jun 1944, Act AVM: 21 Apr 1945, A/Cdre (WS): 21 Apr 1946, A/Cdre: 1 Oct 1946, AVM: 25 Jun 1949. 

Photo Crown Copyright

17 Mar 1915:           Driver Petrol, Honourable Artillery Company.

 8 May 1915:            Gunner, Honourable Artillery Company.

29 Aug 1915:           Embarked Plymouth for Middle East

11 Sep 1915:           Disembarked Alexandria

11 Sep 1915:           Gunner, 'A' Battery, 1/1 Honourable Artillery Company Brigade. (Kantara)

 7 Nov 1915:           Reverted to Driver Petrol at own request, Kantara

29 Dec 1915:           Embarked for Marsa Matruh, Egypt, per SS Missie,

29 Apr 1916:           Disembarked at Mersa Matruh, remustered as Trumpeter

13-19 Jun 1916       Admitted to a  Field Hospital with Gastritis

22 Sep 1917:           Temp duty with ME Brigide, Cairo,

28 Sep 1917:           Returned to duty, Palestine,

xx Sep 1917:           U/T Pilot, No 32 (Training) Wing, Ismailia,

12 Oct 1917:           ?, 19 Brigade,

19 Oct 1917:           Attended Infantry Course, Zeitoun Training Base,

 2 Feb 1918:            Appointed Flying Officer, RFC (Middle East)

25 Apr 1918:           Assistant Instructor, No 194 Sqn

26 May 1918:          Posted to Home Establishment

27 May 1918:          Embarked at Alexandria for UK per RMS Leasowe Castle, which was sunk 104 miles WNW of Alexandria by the U-51

28 May 1918:          Returned to Alexandria

 4 Jun 1918:             Sailed for UK from Suez via Marseille and Le Havre, per SS Manitou

xx Jul 1918:              Attended Refresher Flying Instructors' Course, RAF Shoreham (Graded A1)

 1 Nov 1918:            Flight Commander and Flying Instructor, Hainault Farm (Fairlop)

xx Dec 1918:            Flying Instructor, London Colney

1919                         Pilot, North Russia.

 1 Aug 1919:            Awarded Permanent Commission in the rank of Flying Officer (gazetted 2 Dec 1919)

xx Nov 1919:            Flying Instructor, RAF Thetford

xx Dec 1919:            Supernumerary, RAF Depot (in transit to India)

28 Jan 1920:             Pilot, No 114 Sqn. (Bristol F2B)

 1 Apr 1920:             Pilot, No 28 Sqn. (Bristol F2B)

13 Nov 1920:           Pilot, No 1 Sqn. (Snipe)

xx Nov 1920            Test Pilot, Aircraft Depot, India

20 Jan 1922:             Test pilot, Experimental Section, RAE.

20 Jan 1926:             'B' Flight Commander, No 41 Sqn. (Siskin III)

16 Apr 1929:            Test Pilot, RAF Depot, Middle East.

 9 Nov 1929:            Supernumerary, RAF Depot

20 Jan 1930:             Attended Course No 8, RAF Staff College.

10 Jan 1931:             Personnel Staff, HQ RAF India.

 7 Mar 1933:            Staff, Aircraft Depot, India.

 1 Apr 1933:             Officer Commanding No 1 Sqn, Indian Air Force.

 2 May 1936:            Supernumerary, RAF Depot.

23 Aug 1936:            Officer Commanding, No 54 Sqn. (Gauntlet II/Gladiator I).

28 Mar 1938:            Air Staff, HQ No 11 (Fighter) Group.

xx Dec 1938:            Officer Commanding, RAF Hornchurch.

21 Dec 1940:            Group Captain - Operations, HQ No 11 (Fighter) Group.

xx xxx 1941:             Officer Commanding, RAF Kenley.

25 Jan 1942:             Deputy Director of Fighter Operations.

22 Jan 1943:            SASO, HQ No 13 (Fighter) Group.

14 Jun 1943:            SASO, HQ No 11 (Fighter) Group.

Jul-Oct 1944:          Acting AOC, No 11 (Fighter) Group

15 Jun 1945:            AOC, No 221 Group.

 1 Oct 1945:            AOC, British Commonwealth Air Forces of Occupation, Japan.

xx Jul 1948:             AOC, No 21 (Training) Group.

xx Mar 1949:           Pending retirement

 1 Aug 1950:           Re-instated to the Active List

 1 Aug 1950:           British Chiefs of Staffs' Representative to Generals MacArthur, Ridgeway & Clark, Korea.

28 Mar 1953:          Reverted to Retired List

On 21 November 1920 he was injured in a flying accident whilst flying Bristol F2B, H1656 when it overturned in a forced landing following an engine failure at Lahore.  He was involved in a collision on the ground with Plt Off  I G E Dale during a formation landing at Northolt on 5 August 1926.

In 1932 he was selected to form and command the embryo Indian Air Force, which initially only consisted of one squadron.  Retiring in 1949 he returned to Japan and on the outbreak of the Korean War was recalled to service.  With his Far Eastern experience he was an ideal candidate to act as British Liaison Officer to the UN Commander in Chief, General Douglas MacArthur.  He served in this capacity throughout the Korean War reverting to the retired list in 1953.

After his first wife died in 1964, he re-married in 1968, moving to Yokohama with his new wife, where she worked as a writer and composer.

Citation for the award of the Distinguished Flying Cross

"A very skilful pilot of marked, initiative and courage.  Has been brought to notice on many occasions for the determination shown in his attacks.  His methods are somewhat original.  By flying low, parallel with and behind the enemy's lines, stampeding convoys and destroying wagons, he has caused the greatest confusion amongst the enemy, to the great advantage of our own forces.  Flying Officer Bouchier is a highly competent reconnaissance officer"

(London Gazette 18 November 1919)

This page was last updated on 20/01/19

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