|Pilot F/Lt Robert Wylie Burns Cuming, 200540 (KIA, BR) Toorak, VIC
Co-Pilot P/O Robert Henry Martin, 401454 (KIA, BR) Somerville, VIC
Crew P/O Philip Howard Richards, 407592 (KIA, BR) Payneham, SA
Wireless/Air Gunner Sgt John Bessell-Browne, 406205 (KIA, BR) Toorak, VIC
Wireless/Air Gunner Sgt Albert Edwin Blake, 4560 (KIA, BR) Heywood, VIC
Wireless/Air Gunner Sgt Henry Jennings Dean, 3934 (KIA, BR) Hamilton, NSW
Passenger Sgt Kevin Henry Kelaher, 403287 (KIA, BR) Barraba, NSW
Passenger LAC Ormond Frederick Ewald Crawford, 19485 (KIA, BR)
Passenger LAC Edmund Geoffrey Mears, 19266 (KIA, BR) Essendon, VIC
Passenger LAC Vincent Harold Smith, 30308 (KIA, BR) Hobart, TAS
Passenger Aircraftman 1st Class Frank Morris, 16698 (KIA, BR) Sheffield, England
Crashed January 20, 1942 at 1830hrs
Built by Lockheed at Burbank, CA. Constructors Number 1933. Disassembled and shipped oversea to Australia as part of Defense Aid consignment.
On April 2, 1940 assigned to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) as Hudson A16-79 and reassembled by 2 Air Depot (2 AD). On December 28, 1942 assigned to 2 Squadron. No known nickname or nose art.
On January 20, 1942 took off from Poeloeti Airfield (Penfui) in West Timor grossly overloaded with men and stores to evacuate men and stores ahead of the impending Japanese invasion to the RAAF advanced operational base at Namlea Airfield on Boeroe Island. After take off, this Hudson climbed very steeply and reached 200' to 300' before the left engine burst into flames and the aircraft stalled and crashed onto the runway exploding into flames. Rapid and incorrect trim adjustment or structural failure after the loss of port engine was deemed responsible for the crash. This Hudson was officially stricken on February 19, 1942.
The entire crew as officially declared dead the day of the mission. All are buried at Ambon War Cemetery in collective grave 11. D. 5-16.
CWGC - Robert Wylie Burns Cuming
Robert Henry Martin
CWGC - Philip Howard Richards
CWGC - John Bessell-Browne
CWGC - Albert Edwin Blake
CWGC - Henry Jennings Dean
CWGC - Kevin Henry Kelaher
CWGC - Ormond Frederick Ewald Crawford
CWGC - Edmund Geoffrey Mears
CWGC - Vincent Harold Smith
CWGC - Frank Morris
ADF Serials - Hudson A16-79
RAAFDB - Hudson A17-79
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January 5, 2018