James Neate HANIGAN

Poppy

HANIGAN, James Neate

Service Number: 402120
Enlisted: 27 May 1940
Last Rank: Sergeant
Last Unit: No. 452 Squadron (RAAF)
Born: Hurstville, New South Wales, 27 September 1917
Home Town: Hurstville, Kogarah, New South Wales
Schooling: Sutherland Intermediate High and Canterbury Boys' High School
Occupation: Clerk (Halifax Insurance Co.)
Died: Accidental (mid-air training collision), Whyteleafe, England, United Kingdom, 7 September 1941, aged 23 years
Cemetery: St Luke Churchyard, Whyteleafe, Surrey, England
St Luke Churchyard, Whyteleafe, Surrey, England, United Kingdom
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour
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World War 2 Service

27 May 1940: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Aircraftman 2 (WW2), SN 402120, Sydney, New South Wales
27 May 1940: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Sergeant, SN 402120, No. 452 Squadron (RAAF)
16 Jan 1941: Promoted Royal Australian Air Force, Airman Pilot
22 Feb 1941: Transferred Royal Australian Air Force, Airman Pilot, No. 452 Squadron (RAAF)
7 Sep 1941: Involvement Royal Australian Air Force, Sergeant, SN 402120, No. 452 Squadron (RAAF), Air War NW Europe 1939-45

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Biography contributed by John Edwards

"James, or Jim as he was known to his friends, was born on the 27th September 1917 in Hurstville in New South Wales. He was educated at South Hurstville Pubic School, Sutherland Intermediate School and Canterbury Boys High School, where his name appears on the Honour Roll of Service Men 1939-1945.

After he finished school, he began work at Holland & Son as a junior Insurance Clerk. He was an avid tennis player and musician, and his harmonica, ukulele and Dobro Guitar are considered as family treasures.

Jim joined the Naval Reserve and served as a “Writer” on the HMAS Kuttabul, spending time at sea during training. When war broke out in 1939, having made the acquaintance of “Nobby” Clark a former RAAF pilot, he volunteered for the RAAF and was accepted, enlisting in Sydney on the 27th May 1940. He trained first in Sydney in the basics; Morse Code, the theory of flight etc. and then at Narromine, flying Tiger Moths. He became a member of the first contingent of young pilots to leave Australia under the Empire Air Training Scheme. Such famous names as Keith “Bluey” Truscott, Ray Thorold-Smith and Kenneth Grey were in the same group. He became engaged to Betty Hartley of Hurstville before he sailed.

After training on multi-engine aircraft in Calgary, Canada, Jim eventually went to England to join 452 Squadron under the command of Squadron Leader Paddy Finucane. There he was to fly Spitfires in sorties over France – his sole ambition had been realized. He was apopular man and was later nicknamed by the Squadron as “Spanish George”... - READ MORE LINK (www.spitfireassociation.com.au)

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