Haley, Ambrose Anthony (Bose) (b.1920 - d.2000)

Accession Number PR04734
Collection type Private Record
Record type Collection
Measurement 1 wallet: 1cm
Object type Typescript
Maker Haley, Ambrose
Place made United Kingdom: England, Sussex, Brighton
Date made 1945
Access Open
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945
Copying Provisions Copying permitted subject to physical condition

Related to the Second World War service of O6307 (408173) Flight Lieutenant Ambrose (Bose) Haley 93 Squadron.
[item 1] Typescript of letter written from Brighton, England, by Flt Lt Haley to his mother, 13/5/1945. He began the letter by saying that he has learnt of the death of his brother 438006 Leading Aircraftman Peter John Haley in Canada. He then described the harrowing forced march he had undertaken alongside over two thousand POWs from Stalag Luft III in Poland. The march began in January 1945, and for the next four months, the POWs travelled through Bremen and onto Lubek, stopping at POW camps or sleeping out in the open. The difficult weather conditions led to the deaths of several older German guards, and some of the POWs also lost their lives, caught by strafing from Allied aircraft. Lt Haley was liberated on 2 March 1945. He eventually reached England, where he wrote the letter, while waiting to be transferred home.
[item 2] Three contemporary digital prints of Second World War photographs, comprising two crew shots including Flt Lt Haley, and a picture of Flt Lt Haley with an aircraft.
[item 3] Copy of a photocopied portrait of Flt Lt Haley.
[item 4] Copy of excerpt from a book referring to Flt Lt Haley's capture.
[item 5] Copy of sketch of Stalag Luft III.
[item 6] Photocopy of a page from Flt Lt Haley's log book.

History / Summary

Ambrose Anthony Haley was born in St Helens, Tasmania, on 5 September 1920. He worked as a clerk at the Shell Oil Co. in Launceston, Tasmania. He joined the Militia Forces in January 1939. Haley then enlisted in the RAAF on 28 February 1940, and was sent to Canada as part of the Empire Air Training Scheme. Haley was trained as a pilot. He then flew Spitfires in the Middle East theatre with 93 Squadron. He was one of six aircraft on 5 December 1942, which were attacked by 9 ME 109s, after taking off from Medjez-El-Bab airfield, in northern Tunisia. Haley was shot down and taken prisoner. A Red Cross communication of May 1943, places him at Stalag Luft III, Sagan, Poland, as of 19 April 1943. He remained there until January 1945, when the POWs were forced to march away from the encroaching Russian forces. Following liberation by the Allied forces near Lubeck, Germany, in May 1945, he returned to Australia and was discharged on 2 November 1945.