Danish WW2 Pilots

Flt Lt William Theodor Malling

(1910 - 2004)

Flt Lt William Theodor Malling worked for the East Asiatic Company in Singapore, when the Japanese attacked in December 1941. Shortly before the surrender in February 1942, he evacuated to India, initially, where he volunteered for the Royal Air Force. He served in South Africa.

William Theodor Malling was born on 23 July 1910 at the Havgaard estate on Langeland, the son of Oskar Malling and Ragnhild Henriette Augusta Malling (née Dons).[1] He was the grandson of merchant William Theodor Malling (1830-1913.[2]

Malling was employed at the Bangkok office if the East Asiatic Company in 1936. He was transferred to the Singapore office in the beginning of 1941.[3]

Malling evacuated Singapore as the defeat was inevitable. He seems to have been evacuated to India. He enlisted in Royal Air Force in India in February 1942 (772001).[4] Malling’s service number as a non commissioned officer suggests that he enlisted in a group of volunteers that included another two Danes: later Flt Lt Anthon Sørensen and later Flt Lt Jørgen Kjeldbæk. Both were colleagues from the East Asiatic Company.

Malling was commissioned as Pilot Officer (emergency) on 11 September 1943.[5] He was confirmed in this appointment and promoted to Flying Officer (War Substantive) on 11 March 1944,[6] and further promoted to Flt Lt (War Substantive) on 11 March 1945.[7] He resigned his commission on 11 August 1946.[8] He served with the Royal Air Force in South Africa.[9]

Malling returned to the East Asiatic Company after the war. In 1955, he has the manager of the Kuala Lumpur office[10] and, in 1951, he is known to have been an honorary instructor at the Kuala Lumpur Flying Club.[11]


[1] DNA: Parish register, Longelse Sogn.

[2] Vestberg, Jens: W. Th. Malling i Dansk Biografisk Leksikon, https://biografiskleksikon.lex.dk/W._Th._Malling (accessed on 31 July 2021).

[3] DNA: C. F. Schiöpffes Samling.

[4] NA: AIR 78/102.

[5] London Gazette, issue 36267, p. 5247, 26 November 1943, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/36267/supplement/5247.

[6] London Gazette, issue 36447, p. 1493, 28 March 1944, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/36447/supplement/1493.

[7] London Gazette, issue 37286, p. 4809, 25 September 1945, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/37286/supplement/4809.

[8] London Gazette, issue 37700, p. 4292, 23 August 1946, https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/issue/37700/supplement/4292.

[9] DNA: C. F. Schiöpffes Samling.

[10] New Firm Opens In K. Lumpur in Singapore Standard, 14 October 1955, Page 10, http://eresources.nlb.gov.sg/newspapers/Digitised/Article/singstandard19551014-

[11] Kuala Lumpur Flying Club. Silver Jubilee Souvenir, 1956.