Lieutenant Josef Kormendy von Ikreny Peden

Biography of Lieutenant Josef Kormendy von Ikreny Peden

Josef Peden, who was born in Glasgow on 9th September 1891, owed his grand name to his mother, Johanna Kormendy and his surname to a medical practitioner, William Peden. They lived at 55 Queen Mary Avenue and Josef became a pupil at Glasgow Academy before going on to Edinburgh’s Fettes College in 1905, where he excelled, among other things, at rugby. In 1909 he matriculated at the University of Glasgow in Science and Engineering and enrolled in the classes of Natural Philosophy and Chemistry. His classes in second year included Geology, in which he achieved a first class certificate. In his third year, in the session 1911 to 1912, it was clear that he was specialising in Agricultural Science and he took classes in Botany, Agricultural Chemistry, Veterinary Science and Zoology in which he gained 6th place in the practical class. Though he didn’t graduate at that time, he continued his studies at the West of Scotland Agricultural College in Blythswood Square. The college later relocated to Auchencruive, where his name is remembered on its Memorial to staff and students who fell in the War.

Josef originally joined the 3rd Royal Field Artillery before transferring to the 3rd Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps in its final days before it merged with the Navy’s Air Service and became the Royal Air Force in April 1918. During his three years as a lieutenant in the infantry he served in Gallipoli, Egypt and France. He was no stranger to the horrors of war, but his role now as a pilot exposed him to new and lethal hazards. In the weeks after the German Spring Offensive began in March 1918, the R.F.C. flew constant missions, often at low altitude, strafing and bombing German positions or bringing back vital intelligence of troop movements. The record shows that Josef trained and became a flying officer on the 1st of January 1918. On the 13th January he was flying a single-seat biplane, a Sopwith Camel, when his aircraft was damaged during a low flying sortie aimed at ground targets. He was not injured. A couple of months later, on the 21st of March, he was slightly injured by machine gun fire. He had recovered sufficiently that he was at the controls again exactly a week later, apparently on a reconnaissance mission in a Sopwith F1. When he didn’t return his death was not just presumed but accepted as a fact. Lieutenant Josef Kormendy Von Ikreny Peden was 27 when he was killed on the 28th March 1918. His name is honoured on the Arras Flying Memorial, and on the memorials and Rolls of Honour of Fettes College, the West of Scotland Agricultural College and the University of Glasgow.

Summary

Lieutenant Josef Kormendy von Ikreny Peden
Rank: Lieutenant
Regiment: Royal Air Force
Degree: Student
Awards: N/A
Comments: Killed in action
Note/Press Clipping: Ch 4/4/2/3/1182
Photo ID: N/A

Sources

University of Glasgow Registry

University of Glasgow ROH Ch4/4/2/3/1182

CWGC Debt of Honour

Scottish Military Research Group

Royal Flying Corps People Index

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