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  Supermarine Walrus I Serial Number X9515  
RAAF
8 CU

Former Assignments
2 FBRD

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AWM July 8, 1945

Aircraft History
Built by Supermarine. On June 10, 1942 assigned to the Royal Navy (RN) at Saunders Roe, Cowes. Later, assigned to the Royal Air Force (RAF) to 276 Squadron at Harrowbeer. Later, disassembled and shipped overseas to Australia.

Wartime History
On November 2, 1942 arrived at Point Cook and reassembled twelve days later and assigned to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). On December 25, 1942 arrived at Garbutt Field. While taxing, the right wing was damaged when pulling off the runway to avoid an approaching aircraft. Assigned to 5 CF on December 26, 1942. On January 4, 1943 transfered to Horn Island Airfield and attached to Commander Torres Strait Defence Force. On June 11, 1943 assigned to 9 Squadron at Bowen Airfield in exchange for Seagull A2-199 and had an 180 hour inspection and on July 29, 1943 assigned to 6 CF.

On September 30, 1943 this Walrus rescued the crew of Anson DJ322 which had force landed on the beach west of Groote Eylandt. On taking off in the rough sea, the left float was damaged and landed. Both floats were removed and the aircraft took off again and returned to base safely.

On April 7, 1944 assigned to 14 ARD for overhaul. On May 4, 1944 to 2 FBRD. On May 14 , 1944 to Qantas at Rose Bay for a complete overhaul. During July 1944 assigned to 6 Communication Unit (6 CU). On June 1, 1945 to 2 FBRD for overhaul. On June 12, 1945 assigned to 8 Communication Unit (8 CU) based at Madang Seaplane Base.

On July 8, 1945 took off from Madang Seaplane Base piloted by F/O Agnew and escorted by Catalina A24-44 before landed on the Karawari River near the Sepik River to rescue P-38 piloted by Lt. John P. Carter.

to rescue Lt J. Carter, USAAF, a P38 pilot from the Combat Replacement Training Corps, who had baled out and was injured. The area was in Japanese occupied territory, 95 miles west of Wewak, the river was only 40 yards wide and a 4-5 knot current was carrying numerous logs and other debris downstream. The pilot, F/O Agnew stayed in the river for 2 hours while Carter was carried to the scene and loaded.

Rescue
On July 8, 1945 Catalina A24-44 escorted Walrus X9515 piloted by F/O Agnew with Lt. Johnston from the Australian New Guinea Administrative Unit (ANGAU) and two native police boys aboard. The Walrus landed in the Karawari River despite floating debris and a six knot current. Meanwhile, Beaufort A9-657 piloted by F/L Thomas and Beaufort A9-680 piloted by S/L Dewar both from 100 Squadron covered the rescue by strafing nearby villages and suspect Japanese positions.

While the RAAF Walrus X9515 waited on the Karawari River, the rescue party deployed a life raft, reached the shore and used machetes and carried a stretcher before reaching Carter and leading him back to the river. The entire rescue took two hours. Afterwards, the Walrus successfully took off and landed at Tadji Airfield.

Postwar
On September 28, 1945 assigned to 2 CRD. Placed into storage by 2 CRD on October 12, 1945. Then stored by 2 FBRD on February 2, 1946. On August 14, 1946 offered for sale and placed on tender on September 6, 1946. Final assignment was with the maintenance squadron at RAAF Rathmines with a total of 602.20 hours on the airframe.

Dismantled for road transport and by May 28, 1947 listed for disposal and by August 23, 1948 and authorized for write off. On March 2, 1949 transfered to the auction depot at Rathmines, NSW. Ultimate fate unknown, likely scrapped or otherwise disappeared.

References
WW2 Nominal Roll - Neil Masson Ewing Agnew
NAA [RAAF formation and unit records:] Operations Records Book No.8 (Rescue and Communication) Unit, 1 February 1944 to 4 March 1946 (NAA: AWM64, 638208)
NAA [Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) miscellaneous records:] RAAF War History Section - War Stand Reports - No. 111 Air Sea Rescue Flight (NAA: AWM66, 102 B)
6. Aircraft [Catalina] A24-44 (F/Lt Miller) to locate P-38 pilot forced down approximately 10 miles N.E. of Lake Chambri in the Sepik River area. Survivor located in dense kunai grass but nearest river suitable for alighting situated 2 miles away. The pilot was only 1/2 mile from the Kerawari River in which a Seagull could alight. It was then too late in the afternoon for a Seagull to arrive before dusk so the pilot was led towards the river.
7. Aircraft A25-55 (F/Lt. Miller) covered survivor but due to low cloud base the Seagull was unable to locate him and returned to base. It was not possible to carry out another attempt before dusk. Messages were dropped to the survivor keeping him au fait with the the situation. Emergency supplies of food and water were dropped to him and he was led to within 250 yards of the river.
8. Aircraft A24-44 (F/Lt. Miller) proceeded to Awar to lead the Seagull to the survivor's position. This was done and the pilot led out of the kunai by two native police boys. When the rescue was affected enemy held villages along the Sepik River were strafed."
ADF Serials - A2 Supermarine Seagull & Walrus - Walrus I X9515

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Last Updated
January 9, 2018

 

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