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044827

Image copyright: Copyright expired - public domain,
Public Domain Mark This image is in the Public Domain

ID number 044827
Collection Photograph
Object types
  • Black & white;
  • Landscape;
Photographer Unknown
Place made United Kingdom: England, Greater London, Croydon, Kenley
Date made c 1941
Physical description
  • Black & white;
  • Landscape;

Description

Portrait of 400213 Squadron Leader Keith William Truscott DFC. Before joining the RAAF, Truscott was a prominent football player in Melbourne, Victoria and as such became a public idol. Despite having problems with his pilot training, his potential quality was recognized and he was commissioned on graduation. Posted to England, he joined No. 452 (Spitfire) Squadron RAAF where he became associated with Flight Lieutenant Brendan E. (Paddy) Finucane RAF and a Flight Commander in the Squadron. Over the ensuing months, Truscott became experienced and skilful in air combat and was successful in destroying a number of enemy aircraft. In early 1942, he was given the acting rank of Squadron Leader and appointed Commanding Officer of the Squadron. Shortly afterwards he was posted back to Australia and joined No. 76 (Kittyhawk) Squadron RAAF which was then being formed in Townsville, Qld, before moving to Milne Bay in Papua/New Guinea. As one of the most highly publicised members of the RAAF at this time, Truscott's prospects for ready acceptance in the Squadron were most unpromising. However, he subsequently proved his competence and became a respected and popular member of the squadron. When the then Commanding Officer was killed in operations Truscott succeeded to the command in which he was promptly confirmed. After months of intense fighting against Japanese forces in the Milne Bay area, No. 76 Squadron moved to Darwin in September 1942 and subsequently to Potshot in the Exmouth Gulf area of north western Western Australia in February 1943. It was here that Truscott was killed in an aircraft accident on 28 March 1943.