The Airmen's Stories - P/O W Beaumont
Walter Beaumont was born in Dewsbury, Yorkshire on 21st March 1914. He was educated at Hebden Bridge Grammar School then studied for a B.Sc at London University. This was followed by a PE teacher training course at Carnegie Physical Training College in Leeds.
He was employed as an Assistant Science Master and PT teacher at Enfield Grammar School.
Beaumont had joined the London University Air Squadron and from January 1937 he was also a member of the RAFVR.
His number 740000 would seem to indicate that Beaumont was the very first man to join the RAFVR. He was then living at Coulsdon, Surrey. He married Doris Jessie Newcombe Gosling in January 1938 in Surrey. A son, Michael, had been born by the time he was called up on 1st September 1939.
He completed his training and joined 152 Squadron early in 1940.
Above L to R: P/O FH Posener, F/Lt. ES Hogg, P/O W Beaumont.
On 12th August Beaumont shared a Me109 and damaged two Ju88s, on the 16th he claimed two Me109s destroyed, on the 18th two Ju87s and a shared Me109, on the 22nd a Ju88, on the 25th another Me109 and on the 27th he shared in the destruction of a He111.
On this day Beaumont was hit by return fire from a Ju88 and baled out safely. His Spitfire, R6831, crashed into the sea eight miles off Portland.
Beaumont failed to return from an operational sortie on 23rd September 1940. His Spitfire, R7016, is believed to have crashed into the Channel, cause unknown.
He is remembered on the Runnymede Memorial, Panel 7.
Beaumont was 26 years old and was awarded the DFC (gazetted 22nd October 1940).
Above image courtesy of Dean Sumner.
He is also commemorated by Beaumont House at Churchill School in Zimbabwe.
His brother P/O Ronald Beaumont was killed on 26th May 1942 in Hurricane IIC BD774 of 73 Squadron, shot down by flak. He is buried in Benghazi War Cemetery.