Arthur Loudon's story
Arthur Loudon enlisted into the Royal Australian Air Force in January 1943 at the age of 19. After training in Australia he was posted to the United Kingdom where he served as a Navigator with 12 Squadron Royal Air Force, at RAF Wickenby, in Lincolnshire. Arthur flew 30 operations with 12 Squadron and says he has too many memories to recount. Commissioned in March 1945, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal in July of that year for outstanding ability as a navigator on operations. Of his time in Bomber Command, Arthur remembers most how easily accepted Australians were; this was particularly important to him, as he was serving with an RAF squadron and was the only Australian in his crew.
Discharged in December 1945 with the rank of Flying Officer, Arthur returned to work as a clerk with the New South Wales Railways. Arthur also worked for 13 years with Goodyear Tyres and later worked for 20 years with the National Capital Development Commission in Canberra. Arthur and his wife, a former member of the Women's Auxiliary Air Force who Arthur met while training in the UK, in Arthur's words, 'raised a large family'.