261 SQN RAF
610 SQN RAF
|Rank On Discharge/Death||Flight Lieutenant (FLTLT)|
|Mustering / Specialisation||Pilot|
|Date of Birth||04 Sep 1921|
|Date of Enlistment||11 Nov 1940|
|Contributing Author/s||Compiled by Vince Conant, May 2013`|
The Spitfire Association
Norm Rankin was born on the 4/9/1921 in Bangalow, NSW. He enlisted on the 11/11/1940.
Overall Norm served in the RAAF for almost five years - a long time out of a young man's life! He was discharged on the 4/10/1945. Norm started training at No 2 ITS, Bradfield Park, NSW, before moving to No 8 EFTS in Narrandera; qualifying on Tiger Moths by early 1941.
Later he moved with many of the other fellows to Canada No 11 SFTS to Yorktown, EATS and flew Harvards. He received his wings there. An eventful sea voyage then took place and Norm found himself in England, with No 55 OUT at Newcastle–on-Tyne to be exact and started on Miles Masters and really started to cook with gas when he flew the Hurricane.
The Miles M.9 Master was a British 2-seat monoplane advanced trainer built by Miles Aircraft Ltd for the Royal Air Force and Fleet Air Arm during the Second World War. It went through a number of variants according to engine availability and was even modified as an emergency fighter during the Battle of Britain. It was a fast, strong and fully aerobatic aircraft and served as an excellent introduction to the high performance British fighter aircraft of the day: the Spitfire and Hurricane.
Norm moved over to Number 610 Squadron RAF and, still remaining in England, flew Spitfire Mk V's, and started on Operations.
In late 1942, Norm was shipped out with No 261 Squadron RAF to Ceylon, India and Burma fighting a different enemy the Japanese and flew Hurricanes, Spitfire MkII and Mk IIc's in various operations. Later in 1944 he was still in India with No 1 AFTU and was flying Spitfires, Harvards and Kittyhawks.
Moving on, Norm was transferred back to Australia and arrived at Parkes No 8 OTU in 1944. He flew Wirraways and Mk VIII Spitfires there.
Norm's war then started to hot up again and he transferred to 457 Squadron RAAF and for the remainder of 1944 to 1945 flew Spitfire Mk VII’s on operations against the Japanese air force in Morotai and Borneo.
His medals were the 39-45 Star, Air Crew Europe Star, Burma Star, Pacific Star, Defence Medal and the 1939-45 War Medal.
Air crew Europe Star the medal was awarded to Commonwealth aircrew who participated in operational flights over Europe, from UK bases.
Pacific Star Defence Medal
Norm was later in life appointed to the Executive Committee of the Spitfire Association and resigned from that in 2005 due to the ill health of his wife.