PROWSE, Richard John

  1. Service Details
  2. Personal Details
  3. Unit and Rank Details
  4. Commemoration
  5. Notes
  6. Sources

Service Details

Branch of Service
Air Force
World War II (1939-1945)
Date of Enlistment
Date of Discharge
Place of Enlistment
Sydney NSW

Personal Details

Date of Birth
Place of Birth
Adelong NSW
Address (at enlistment)
'Hill Station', Tharwa Road ACT
School(s) Attended
Ainslie Primary School, Telopea Park Intermediate School
Public servant
Next of Kin
Richard Prowse (father), 'Hill Station', Tharwa Road ACT

Unit and Rank Details

Service Number
Final Rank
Flight Sergeant
Final Unit
School of Administration


Honour Roll in 'The Beacon', the Magazine of Ainslie School 1943


Prowse arrived in Canberra in the mid 1920s with his family. His father ran the Blue Moon Cafe in Civic for several years and he played hockey and rugby league at school. He was a member of the 3rd Battalion (militia) before joining the RAAF and a clerk in the Customs Department (from 1937). Prowse arrived in Canada in July 1941 for training under the Empire Air Training Scheme before proceeding to the UK in October 1941. He served as a fighter pilot with 66 Squadron at Almaza in the Middle East from April 1942 before transferring to 450 Squadron (the 'Desert Harassers') in July 1942 flying a Kittyhawk. He suffered compound injuries to the femur and his arm in an air accident near Tripoli in January 1943, resulting in the loss of the arm. He arrived back in Australia in November 1943. One then young boy admired how Prowse was "adept at fly fishing with one arm, and also the ability to roll a cigarette with one hand".

Prowse was promoted to Chief Film Censor in 1954, a role he filled for 15 years. Prior to his retirement he was awarded an MBE for his public service. He and his wife Dorothy retired to Moruya where he died on 16 April 1992.

Description - height 5 feet 6.5 inches, weight 129 pounds, chest 32 inches, medium complexion, brown eyes, dark brown hair, Methodist, tinea scar on outer border left foot.


WWII Nominal Roll
ACT Electoral Rolls 1916 to 1967
NAA RecordSearch - Series A9301 (RAAF Personnel files of Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) and other ranks, 1921-1948)
Irwin Prowse, 'From Cornwall to the Colonies: A Prowse Chronicle 1760-1990', 1992
Information provided by Val Emerton and Gavin Young

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