M.272 First Officer  William Silver Edgar 
 flag usa b. 7 Oct 1906, Waco TX  2 Jan 1941 to 2 Apr 1942 

 ata william edgar ATA

  from "Fighting Men of Texas" (1948)    


'Silver' came from his mother Estelle's maiden name

Educated at Baylor University, Waco

2nd Lieut., Army Air Corps 1932-35, stationed at Ft Crockett, Galveston, TX

Awarded his 'wings' at Kelly Field, Texas in 1933

Author of "Wings across the World", a syndicated newspaper column

Also a pilot, rancher, and with some 'banking experience'

prev. exp: about 900hrs

Address in 1941: 1305 Jefferson Ave, Waco, Texas

Postings: 4FPP

His initial ATA test described him as "a rather nervous type, but general flying fair."

 ata william edgar id card

"An excellent officer. A keen and reliable pilot."

He had a nasty forced landing on the 2 Mar 1942, in Airspeed Oxford L4597 following an engine failure. "He crash-landed on the ice of Loch Laidon but returned to the burning aircraft and saved the Log Books and his kit. The ice broke under him before he reached the shore and he was completely immersed. He then walked nine miles before he found a barn for shelter."

[During 1978 the two Armstrong Siddeley Cheetah engines from L4597 were recovered by the Scotland West Aircraft Investigation Group using a raft. Subsequently the engines were restored by staff at Rolls Royce’s Hillington site. At least one of them was subsequently put on display at Bamburgh Castle in Northumberland.]

He put in a request for a replacement cap, but before this could be actioned died in another accident:

 Spitfire VB 92 Sqn top view c1941

d. 2 Apr 1942 (Died in ATA Service) - Spitfire BM358 crashed at Chapel of Garioch, 20 miles NW of Dyce, (or possibly at nearby Boghead, about 4 miles southwest of Inverurie) on a flight from Castle Bromwich to Kinloss.

The very next day, a telegram arrived from home:


Buried at the Cambridge American Cemetery, and commemorated at Baylor University: "William Silver Edgar lights up Fountain Mall every day and Robert Warren illuminates the courtyard by the Carroll Science Hall. These two men, along with 123 other Baylor men and women, made the supreme sacrifice in World War II. Now they stand as the honor guard at Baylor in the form of red granite light posts."

 Download ATA Pilot Personal Record (.zip file):download grey


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