Robert, who was known as Bob, was born on the 8th August 1925 at Moonee Ponds in Victoria. He attended Scotch College in Melbourne from 1937 to 40 as a weekly boarder and was a member of Littlejohn House. He enlisted in the RAAF on the 13th August 1943.
We do not really know much about Bob’s time in the RAAF. However, we do know that he was with 85, 452 and 457 Squadrons, but not when. 452 and 457 Squadrons flew Spitfires and were based in The Northern Territory and in Bob’s time, they would have been involved in ground attack roles against the Japanese. 85 squadron was tasked with the air defence of Western Australia, but did not see any combat during the War.
We know he was also at No.8 Operational Training Unit (OTU) because of the following ADF Serials Report: Accident 2220 hrs on the 19th November 1944 at Parkes, NSW, when taking off. Aircraft landed on otherside of boundary fence after aborting take-off. Pilot: Sergeant R.B.Lloyd was not injured.
Bob must have spent some time as an instructor, because he was eventually discharged from No.5 Service Flying Training School (SFTS) on the 13th February 1946. No.5 SFTS was one of eight Service Flying Training Schools established by the RAAF to provide intermediate and advanced flying instruction to new pilots as part of Australia’s contribution to the Empire Air Training Scheme. No. 5 SFTS was formed at RAAF Station Uranquinty, New South Wales, in October 1941 and wasdisbanded in February 1946. This was probably about the same time that Bob was discharge.
In 2009, Bob wrote, “I thank Scotch for giving me the ability to succeed as I did.” He certainly had, as he had realised his dream of becoming a pilot, flying Spitfires. After the war, Bruce became company director of his parents’ company, PW & E Lloyd Pty Ltd. He then retired to Cobram to enjoy its cheap golf. Bob died on the 8th August 2010.
Phil Listemann (The History of 457 Squadron) and David Hamilton
Updated by Vince Conant
The Spitfire Association