Sqn-Ldr David Edmund Stodart DSO

 mFA_dstodart2.jpg 1934

David Stodart in 1912  1912

 

 Born 31st July 1882, in Gobur, Victoria, Australia, eldest of seven children.

Went to Edinburgh to study medicine; a very early aviator (RAeC Certificate No 321, in 1912); pre-WWI racer in England as 'Dr Edmund'. Mentioned in dispatches three times during WWI, promoted eventually to Major, he was awarded the DFC and later the DSO.

Post-WWI,  RAF Squadron Leader in the Middle East:

"Cobham to go on

Successor to Shot Airman Chosen

 Airmen have been searching for two days to trace the Arab sniper who shot Mr. A. B. Elliot, the air mechanic, who was accompanying Mr. Alan Cobharn on his flight to Australia and back.

Accompanied by Squadron-Leader David E. Stodart, D.S.0., of the Shaibah Iraq Bombing Squadron, Mr. Cobham flew back to Nasiryah yesterday.

Mr. Cobham is to continue his flight. The Havilland Aircraft Company is sending Mr. Moore, of the Armstrong Siddeley firm, to take the place of Mr. Elliot" Daily Herald - Friday 09 July 1926

 

...then back to Middlesex Hospital as a physician in the dermatology department.

 

1935 accident 1 - david e stodart 1935 accident 2 - david e stodart

 

MacRobertson Race 1934 K4047 Airspeed Courier (David Stodart) [0822-0032]

Oldest and 'most casual' competitor in the MacRobertson Race, but the first Australian to reach Melbourne. He and Kenneth should have won one of the handicap prizes - possibly even the First Prize - but mistakes in the handicapping system robbed them of the glory they deserved, not to mention the cash.

After the Race, he stayed on in Australia for a while, mostly working as a flying instructor, then finally came back to England, where he died 26th February 1938 in Brighton, aged 55:

"LONDON. February 28

The death has occurred of Squadron-Leader David Edmund Stodart, who, owing to the Incapacitatlon of all the officers in his detachment in war time, did the work of an entire squadron for three weeks, Including the administration of bombing. observing and photographing.
Stodart. when 52, was sixth In the Melbourne air race In 1934."
 
 

p.s. the £2,000 for the Handicap Race prize would be worth about £400,000 today...might have been useful, considering that David's estate when he died was £157.

 

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