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210692 A/Sgt H.B Hooper 5th S.A.I and SAAF


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210692 A/Sgt Harry Bernard Hooper


Harry Bernard Hooper was born in London England on the 11/06/1898.

He moved to South Africa with his family circa 1910. Harry was 18 yrs old and single when he attested into the 2nd South African Infantry Brigade in Potchefstroom on the 22/09/1916. His next of kin was noted as his sister, Josephine Rose Hooper of North End, Port Elizabeth. He was a Clerk with the South African Railways.

Hooper was transferred to the 5th SAI and posted to “A” Company on the 24/10/1916 and shortly afterwards embarked per the “Professor” from Duran for German East Africa. Hooper was not to have an exciting war as he was to remain in Zomba on Garrison duty. He was however promoted to Corporal on the 01/12/1917. Harry stayed on in Zomba until the 03/06/1918 when he was transferred back to the Union. He arrived in Pretoria via train from Zomba, this must have been an exhausting journey for him and upon arriving in Pretoria he was admitted to No 4 General Hospital at Roberts Heights suffering from malaria and sunstroke. Once he had recovered he was sent back to GEA and remained there until he was again send back to the Union for treatment in Hospital. He left Zomba for good on the 11/10/1918.

Hooper was eventually discharged on the 09/03/1919 from Roberts Heights stating his intended place of residence as Bertrams, Johannesburg. Prior to his discharge he married Dorothy Harriet Parker. They had a daughter but sadly she died very young.

Harry Hooper’s WW1 medals were dispatched on the 06/05/1925. The papers confirm the pair as his full entitlement for WW1

With the Second World War in its 2nd year Hooper decide it was time to put back on a uniform. He attested into the South African Air Force on the 02/05/1941 and was given the Regimental number 210692 and the rank of L/AM. By this time he and Dorothy were living at 65 Jorrison Street in Braamfontein, Johannesburg. After all the paperwork and medicals had been taken care of Harry was posted to No 100 Air School as a Clerk. At the end of May 1941 he was posted to No 61 Squadron which was then based in Germiston, Transvaal. It was here that he injured his right eye which resulted in him loosing complete sight in the eye. Hooper was then transferred to No 6 Squadron on the 02/03/1942 and remained in the Union until the 21/07/1943 when he was transferred to MAFD(VH) (Mobile Air Force Depot). His mustering was that of Clerk. On the 06/12/1943 he was transferred to the Middle East, he was send to the SAAF Base Depot and from there posted to 28 Squadron. He remained on strength of 28 Squadron until the 03/10/1945 when he was again posted to the Mobile Air Force Depot. He was finally sent to the Dispersal Depot at Hector Norris Park on the 05/11/1945 and discharged with full benefits on the 17/11/1945.

As Harry Hooper arrived in the Middle East after the qualification period for the Africa Star his full entitlement for WW2 was the Defence Medal, 39-45 War Medal and Africa Service Medal. This is confirmed in the papers.

Sadly Harry and Dorothy divorced in 1960 and Harry moved to Kimberley where he passed away in 1968.

A good two campaign group of medals sold with research work for both wars from the SANDF Archives.




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