Kenneth Cole enlisted in the Royal Air Force as Aircraft Apprentice, at RAF Halton on 26 June 1936. He was posted No. 29 Squadron at Debden on 5 January 1939 and from there to Singapore, late August 1939 where he joined No. 230 Squadron which was equipped with Sunderlands.
He moved with the squadron to Ceylon, February 1940, before the squadron was transferred to Middle East Command, May 1940. Initially flying out of Egypt the squadron flew reconnaissance sorties for the Mediterranean Fleet and anti-submarine patrols. He was promoted to Sergeant as of 1.3.1941.
With the German invasion of Greece in April 1941, 228 and 230 Squadrons were tasked with the evacuation of 900 refugees from the Greek coast. These included senior Allied Commanders and the King of Greece. Cole's Sunderland, piloted by Wing-Commander P.R. Woodward, evacuated the King of the Hellenes from Greece to Crete for which Cole as the entire crew of seven received Greek awards. He did not receive the award until 1962, at which time he was sent the Greek Air Force Cross and relevant bestowal document.
Cole continued to serve with the squadron until 31.5.1943, when he was posted for service in an instructional capacity. Finally he was discharged 2.3.1949.
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