Danish WW2 Pilots

Adrian E. Anholm

(1924 - 2004)

Adrian Eric Anholm was born in Yorkshire in 1924 in a Danish-British family. He served in the Royal Air Force during the war, and was awarded the Christian X Memorial Medal after the war. This medal was only awarded to Danish nationals.

Adrian Eric Anholm was born on 14 April 1924 in Hull in Yorkshire, England. He was the son of Gertrude Stenstrom Anholm.[1]

Anholm was still at school and living in Scarborough with his great-grandfather—a retired shipbroker—when the war broke out in September 1939.[2] His mother had married in 1930[3] and was living in Croydon.[4]

Anholm’s great-great-grandfather emigrated to the United Kingdom in the 1840s and became a naturalised British subject on 28 September 1860.[5] It was a family of seamen. Anholm’s grandfather was a merchant seaman during the both wars.[6] His uncle, Chief Officer Edgar Stenstrom Anholm, was killed when the SS Fort la Montee caught fire and eventually blew up outside Algiers in on 4 August 1943.[7] He had been awarded a Member of the Order of the British Empire in 1941.[8] Another uncle, John Stenstrom Anholm, died on 23 November 1940, when SS Tymeric was torpedoed and sunk by the German U-123.[9]

Anholm enlisted in the Royal Air Force in Cardington presumably in 1942 (1625720).[10] Few information are available on his service. He seems to have been attached to the Photographic Section at RAF Leighton Buzzard, which became a major base for secret communication traffic.

After the war, Anholm received the Christian X Memorial Medal 1940-45 after the war, despite not being a Danish national.[11] Anholm was one of the ex-RAF servicemen, who was interested in serving in the postwar Danish air force. He never enlisted though.[12]


[1] Ancestry: England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1916-2007.

[2] Ancestry: 1939 England and Wales Register.

[3] Ancestry: England & Wales, Civil Registration Marriage Index, 1916-2005.

[4] Ancestry: 1939 England and Wales Register.

[5] NA: HO 1/152/5935, Naturalisation Papers: Anholm, August, from Denmark.

[6] NA: BT 351/1/3709; BT 395/1/2126.

[7] Commonwealth War Graves Commission, https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/find-war-dead/casualty-details/2119171 (accessed on 4 October 2020); Wikipedia, SS Fort la Montee, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SS_Fort_La_Montee (accessed on 4 October 2020).

[8] The London Gazette, 35214, p. 3963, 8 July 1941.

[9] Commonwealth War Graves Commission, https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/find-war-dead/casualty-details/2797749 (accessed on 4 October 2020); Uboat.net, Tymeric, https://uboat.net/allies/merchants/ship/673.html (accessed on 4 October 2020).

[10] Service numbers 1610001 to 164990 were allotted to Cadington in October 1941, and numbers 1860001 to 1869700 in October 1942, cf. https://www.ab-ix.co.uk/pdfs/rfc_raf.pdf.

[11] Frihedsmuseets database over søfolk og soldater i allieret tjeneste 1939-45, http://allieret.natmus.dk/person.aspx?83990 (accessed on 10 October 2020).

[12] Ancker, P. E. (2001). De danske militære flyverstyrkers udvikling 2,1 1940 - 1945 : en forskningsmæssig undersøgelse af de danske militære flyvestyrkers udvikling under den tyske besættelse af Danmark 1940 - 45.