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Cronin, Laurance Francis Marshall

Cronin, Laurance Francis Marshall

     
Příjmení:
Surname:
Cronin
Jméno:
Given Name:
Laurance Francis Marshall
Jméno v originále:
Original Name:
Laurance Francis Marshall Cronin
Fotografie či obrázek:
Photograph or Picture:
Hodnost:
Rank:
poručík
Akademický či vědecký titul:
Academic or Scientific Title:
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Šlechtický titul:
Hereditary Title:
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Datum, místo narození:
Date and Place of Birth:
17.07.1918 Canterbury, Victoria
Datum, místo úmrtí:
Date and Place of Decease:
XX.07.1991 Beaconsfield, Victoria
Nejvýznamnější funkce:
(maximálně tři)
Most Important Appointments:
(up to three)
-
Jiné významné skutečnosti:
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Other Notable Facts:
(up to three)
stíhací eso
5-0-5 vítězství
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Zdroje:
Sources:
Shores C. - Williams C.: Aces High, Grub Street, London 1994
Shores C.: Aces High, volume 2, Grub Street, London 1999
URL : https://www.valka.cz/Cronin-Laurance-Francis-Marshall-t86634#320837Version : 0
MOD
     
Příjmení:
Surname:
Cronin
Jméno:
Given Name:
Laurance Francis Marshall
Jméno v originále:
Original Name:
Laurance Francis Marshall Cronin
Všeobecné vzdělání:
General Education:
DD.MM.RRRR-DD.MM.RRRR
Vojenské vzdělání:
Military Education:
DD.MM.RRRR-DD.MM.RRRR
Důstojnické hodnosti:
Officer Ranks:
DD.MM.RRRR
Průběh vojenské služby:
Military Career:
Vyznamenání:
Awards:

25.04.1944

Záslužný letecký kříž
Distinguished Flying Cross
-

Poznámka:
Note:
-
Zdroje:
Sources:
Shores C. - Williams C.: Aces High, Grub Street, London 1994
Shores C.: Aces High, volume 2, Grub Street, London 1999
URL : https://www.valka.cz/Cronin-Laurance-Francis-Marshall-t86634#502995Version : 0
MOD
Flying Officer Laurance Francis Marshall "Larry" Cronin


RAAF No.400913



The RAAF "Larry" Cronin entered in 1940 and pilot training under the Empire Air Training Scheme in Australia. After its completion in 1942 was sent to Britain, where he underwent training for operating and subsequently was in August ranked to 453. squadron the RAAF.


"Čtyřistapadesáttrojka" was formed just two months before his arrival, after its predecessor was destroyed during the fighting in Singapore, Malaysia and on Java. Now she was armed with the fighters Spitfire Mk.In and she was finishing pre-deployment training over occupied Europe. "Larry" but didn't even settled in, and after less than two months, he again moved. His new unit has become 81. squadron the RAF.


"Jednaosmdesátka" was at the time of his arrival at the airport Wellingore and was preparing for service overseas. For the unit however, this was nothing new, because in the period August – November 1941 she served with the Hurricanes Mk.IIB in northern Russia. This time, however, waiting for the hot sands of north Africa. At the end of October to the staff of the unit moved to Gibraltar, where he stole the new Spitfires Mk.VC.


Day 8. November 1942 launched the Allies invade French north african colonies and later in the day to Spitfires the squadron moved on occupied algerian airport Maison Blanche. From here, the pilots participated in the protection of landing beaches and busy ports.


In these operations already, "Larry" participated in, the first success, however, notched up in the new year of 1943, more precisely 3. January, when the Bone has damaged the bomber Ju 88. At that time also, the 81. squadron received the first Spitfires Mk.IX. On it, Cronin earned the remaining victory in the Mediterranean.


Another success notched 26. march, when he damaged Bf 109 and its "african score" closed exactly a month later damage another stodevítky.


In may 1943 the axis forces in Africa capitulating and in June, "osmdesátjednička" moved to Malta, where they should participate in the forthcoming landings in Sicily.
Operation Husky was launched in the night of 9. July, "Larry" but his account raises until almost after a month.


25. July 1943 it was reported a large formation of enemy transport aircraft bound for Sicily. Its capture was dispatched several units of the RAF success, however, was just a group of Spitfires of 322. the wings, which also belonged to 81. squadron. Other Spitfires were 152. and 242. squadron. Allied pilots reported clash with more than thirty Ju 52 with an entourage of about 20 Bf 109 and C.202 and battle for them ended a great success. When the loss of one machine reported a 28 victory, "osmdesátjednička" accounted for 4 destroyed Ju 52 and three accompanying Bf 109 G. On this success with "Larry" participated in the destruction of two stodevítek.


The enemy formation was not so great, it consisted of ten Ju52/3m from Even./TG 1, which was accompanied by a dozen Bf 109 G from the II./JG 27 and Even./JG 77, in the area operated on even a smaller group of the Italian C....202 from 161°Gruppo, loss but suffered heavy. Neither the transport Ju-52 didn't make it out without damage, fighters were shot down 7, one of the Italian, and several others were damaged. Probably the biggest loss was Oblt. Heinz-Edgar Berres, commander 1./JG 77 and winner of 52 fights, which disappeared in a brand new Bf 109 G-6 BF+QU (W.Nr.18101).


The last victory in Europe won the Cronin 14. September 1943, when over Salernem shot down one the Fw 190. At that time, his unit operated out of the busy sicilian airport Milazzo – east and "Larry" was promoted to the rank of Warrant Officer (ensign).


In November began the unit rearm the Spitfires Mk.VIII, at the same time, she but awaited the next move. New order squadron became the India. At the airport Alipore arrived first Spitfires 4. December 1943, January 1944, the unit moved to the airport of Imphal and was involved in the battles over Burma. In that time, the japanese attack in the area Arakanu and 81. squadron participated in support of allied troops.


In February has already been the situation the forces of the Commonwealth in the area of Arakanu stabilized and 81. squadron returned to Imphalu. In this area prepared the Allies a major offensive and Spitfires should "blind" the japanese survey. And here won the "Larry" your first victory in Asia.


Day 5. march was launched the Operation Thursday. The goal was to plant more than 10 000 Chinditů with the equipment behind enemy lines by transport aircraft and gliders on pre-prepared surfaces in the jungle. All the time in the area of operation operated by allied fighters, to "exorcise" any japanese aircraft. The following day had the same task to "Larry".


In the 7.40 pm took off together with his number on the alert against the reported explorer. It was a powerful Ki-46, which flew at a height of 30 000 feet. In the meantime this machine was for most of the allied fighters in Burma, an elusive adversary for the Spitfire Mk.VIII, however, poses a bigger problem.
After a few minutes climb Cronin Ki-46 caught up and immediately attacked. After the first dose, however, he stuck one cannon, which to him made it more difficult for aiming. After a few more doses, however, the aircraft went into an uncontrollable fall and broke south of Palelu. As it turned out later, "Larry" firing, killing the pilot of the machine, which belonged to the 1. čútai 8. sentai, ensign Tošikazu Kotaniho. At the same time, it was about 99. the victory of his unit.


Allied activities, however, already the Japanese uncovered and the airfield became the target of air attacks. To strengthen the defense was 10. march sent to the area of the "Broadway" section of Spitfires 81. the squadron, "Larry" was a pilot of one of them:


"a Very small runway and very bumpy. The jungle all around – a plane landing from the height of the tops of the trees. The wrecks of gliders lying around. About 90 people were killed in accidents involving gliders during the landing.“


The aircraft remained in the area overnight, later, there were from dawn to dusk. 13. march, the Japanese discovered "Broadway" and launched a series of air attacks. The first came around 14.25 hours when above the aerodrome appeared in over 40 Ki-43 from 64. and 204. sentai. Mobile radar did not catch the attack in time and the six present Spitfires was ordered to start late. The last of the Spitfires from the area pushed away just at the moment when it appeared the japanese fighter and he became for them an easy prey. His pilot, F/Sgt And. Campbell, was killed. The remaining pilots, however, took advantage of the superiority of their machines and reported four wins, one scored even Cronin, who yet another Ki-43 was damaged.


In fact, but shot down the machine M. Kana from 204. Sentai, which fell and heavily damaged aircraft des. Okada from the second unit, which emergency landed in Mandalay. The japanese attack was relatively successful, because on the ground they destroyed the connecting L-5, damage-flight incapable Spitfire and remembered the mobile radar and killed or wounded several soldiers. Cronin at the event later recalled:


"Today, more than 30 enemy fighters attempted to shoot at our new base. The Radar failed, he warned us just 5 minutes before the attack. Sgt. Campbell and I were last at the start. Attacked directly over the airport – Campbell was killed instantly. I was attacked by eight Japs as soon as I got into the air. Narrowly I escaped death. I saw them when they were 80 yards behind me and start shooting like crazy. Eventually I lost them, didn't hit me even once – miserable bastards! One I destroyed – almost was thrown from the cab. Now I have on the account 5 destroyed.“


Four days later, the situation repeated itself, for 81. the wing, however, went very wrong. All day the Japanese attacked various targets, during one of these events from the large formation separated by 15 Ki-43 belonging to 204. sentai and attacked the "Broadway". Into the air this time got only a pair of Spitfires. First off the unit commander S/Ldr Whitamore, which shot down one of the attackers, the next moment was himself struck and in the ruins of his machine came to life. The second the air got F/O And. Peart. He also destroyed one Ki-43, then got into long fights with a few fighters and his Spitfire was getting one hit after another. Couldn't protect the airport, which went through hell. Four Spitfires were destroyed or heavily damaged, "Larry" was a witness to the entire attack:


"in the end the Japanese came to this, that when flying in low altitude, directly over the tops of the hills, our radar will pick it up when it's too late. Today they came this way – there were over 20. The commander and Peart managed to get into the air, but they were immediately attacked. The commander shot down one enemy in flames immediately but he was killed by another Japanese. Peart also got one and disappeared with him. Capt. Maclean (SAAF), the commander of the squadron And Lt. Gasson (SAAF), F/O Fell (Canadian) and F/Lt Coulter (RAF) were strapped in their aircraft ready for takeoff, when the Japanese came over the trees. F/Lt Coulter was killed and his aircraft burned. The others were rescued, but their aircraft were destroyed. Peart landed elsewhere, refueled and returned with his story. Our pilots were pulled at night aboard a DC-3.“


The loss of the popular and experienced commander hit the whole unit and was one of the toughest losses of the whole RAF during the fighting in Burma.


The last victory Cronin scored 12. April 1944, when it was ten Spitfires sent against a large group of japanese fighters. There was a brief skirmish, after which Cronin and Capt. Maclean each claimed damage to one Oscar.


"Larry" so a total of scored 5 of certain victory and the other 5 planes damaged, for which he received DFC. Before he was promoted to the officer rank of Flying Officer (lieutenant).


At the front remained Cronin in the second half of 1944, when they returned back to Australia. Here the first served as a staff pilot at 2. OTA in Milduře, then served with the 1. HERE in Sale.
After the end of the war he left the RAAF and worked in his father's accounting firm in Melbourne, later the company moved to Beaconsfieldu in the state of Victoria, where he worked until his death in 1991.



Table win
Date
Unit
Type of aircraft
Place
Enemy
3.1.1943
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.VC FL-G
Bone
Ju 88 well.
26.3.1943
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.IX EN195/FL-C
the area of Mateur, J Beja
Bf 109 well.
26.4.1943
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.IX EN202/FL-M
Medjez-el-Bab
the Bf 109 well.
25.7.1943
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.VC JL188
Cannitello
Bf 109 G zn.



north Sicily
Bf 109 G zn.
14.7.1943
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.IX MB531
Salerno
the Fw 190 zn.
6.3.1944
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.VIII JG630/FL-C
J Palel, JV Imphal
Ki-46 zn.
13.3.1944
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.VIII JG630/FL-C
"Broadway"
Ki-43 zn.



"Broadway"
Ki-43 well.
12.4.1944
81. squadron
Spitfire Mk.VIII JG314
Tulihal
Ki-43 well.




Sources:
Cull, B. - Malizia, N. - Gale, F.: Spitfires Over Sicily, Grub Street, London 2000
Price, And.: Late Marque Spitfire Aces 1942-45, Osprey Pub., Oxford 1996
Shores, C. - Williams, C....: Aces High, Grub Street, London 1994
Shores, C.: Aces High, volume 2, Grub Street, London 1999
Shores, C.: Air War For Burma, Grub Street, London, 2005
Thomas, And.: Spitfire Aces of Burma and the Pacific, Osprey Pub., Oxford 2009
www.wikipedia.org
.
URL : https://www.valka.cz/Cronin-Laurance-Francis-Marshall-t86634#320839Version : 0
MOD