Henry Russell Braddon, Leslie Holden & Dr George R. HamiltonPrint Page Print this page


Photographs supplied by Peter F Williams

A stained glass window erected in the Shore Chapel in memory of Henry Braddon, Leslie Holden & Dr George R. Hamilton, former classmates at the Shore Sydney Church of England Grammar School and lifelong friends who all died in 1932. 

Leslie Hubert (Les) Holden, MC, AFC (1895 – 1932) was an Australian fighter ace of World War One and later a commercial aviator. He was awarded the Military Cross, and went on to achieve five aerial victories flying Airco DH.5s and Royal Aircraft Factory S.e.5s.  In 1929, he and Dr George Hamilton located Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles Ulm in the north-west Australian desert after the pair was reported missing on a flight to England in the Southern Cross  Holden began transport operations in New Guinea in 1931. He was killed the following year with Dr Hamilton in a plane crash in Australia.

Captain Leslie Holden, one of Australia's foremost air pilots, and two companions were killed on Sunday when a New England Airways aeroplane carrying mails from Sydney to Brisbane, crashed near Byron Bay in a rainstorm. The victims were : Captain Leslie Holden, airman, of Sydney,  Dr. George Redfern Hamilton, of Macquarie Street, Sydney. Ralph Virtue, air pilot, of Lismore, New South Wales. Little is known of how the accident occurred. Visibility was bad owing to the rain mist, and it is thought possible that the machine was damaged and weakened by striking a tree on a hilltop. The bodies were frightfully mutilated, and the three men are believed to have been killed instantly. Captain Holden and Dr. Hamilton were first and second in command of the aeroplane Canberra, which found the Southern Cross when it was lost in the rugged Kimberley district in the North-West of Australia.
Border Watch (Mount Gambier, SA),  20 September 1932.

Appreciation of the work of Dr. George R. Hamilton, who lost his life in an aeroplane accident last Sunday, is expressed by a number of correspondents.  "D.N." states that to those who were privileged to know Dr. Hamilton as friend or physician, who admired and envied those qualities which sent him out to aid a fellow flier, who rejoiced in him as a genial and modest raconteur, his passing will be more than a fleeting sorrow; but while Macquarie-street mourns him, there will be no sincerer sorrow than will be felt among his "outpatients" at Sydney Hospital. Mr. B. L. C. Stoyles states that by the tragic death of Dr. Hamilton, the New South Wales Microscopical Society has lost one who by his kindly, genial manner, had endeared himself to the members. Dr. Hamilton had occupied the presidential chair for three years.
The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW),  24 September 1932.

A representative gathering attended the funeral of the late Mr. Henry Russell Braddon, eldest son of Sir Henry Braddon, M.L.C., yesterday. The presence of prominent figures in the legal and commercial life of the community bore striking tribute to the esteem in which Mr Braddon was held. Before the burial a memorial service took place at the chapel of the Church of England Grammar School, North Sydney, at 2 pm. 
The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW),  23 December 1932.

There have been placed in the porch of the chapel of the North Sydney Church of England Grammar School for Boys, windows in memory collectively of three former students of the school - Henry Russell Braddon, George Redfearn (sic) Hamilton, and Leslie Hubert Holden. All of them finished their career at the school, and were friends throughout life. Mr Braddon, the son of Sir Henry Braddon went to war and was afterwards called to the Bar. Dr. George R. Hamilton, a well known medical practitioner, and Captain Les Holden, a famous aviator, were killed together in an air crash in September, 1932. Mr Braddon died two months later. The windows depict the "Sermon on the Mount." It was considered that a theme representing Christ as the Teacher was appropriate to the porch of the school chapel. They are the work of Christopher Webb, one of the best-known English makers of today.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 December 1934. 





Address:Blue Street, Shore Chapel, Church of England Grammar School, North Sydney, 2060
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.840894
Long: 151.204284
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Window
Monument Theme:People
Monument Designer:Christopher Webb


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:December-1934
Front Inscription
          AND FRIENDS 
Source: MA, ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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