07/08.6.1944 No. 1667 H.C.U. Halifax V LL459 P/O. Raymond L. Francis
Operation: Training exercise
Date: 07/08th June 1944 (Wednesday/Thursday)
Unit: No. 1667 HCU (Heavy Conversion Unit)
Type: Halifax V
Base: RAF Sandtoft, North Lincolnshire.
Location: Howden Dyke Island, River Humber, Yorkshire
Pilot: P/O. Raymond Leslie Francis AUS/418380 RAAF Age 25. Killed
Fl/Eng: Sgt. Frederick William Reed 1181898 RAFVR Age 24. Killed
Nav: Fl/Sgt. William Robert Rex Porter AUS/40230 RAAF Age 27. Killed
Air/Bmr: Fl/Sgt. William Edgar Laurence Moody AUS/422623 RAAF Age 22. Killed
W/Op/Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Gilbert Francis Brown AUS/418699 RAAF Age 20. Killed
Air/Gnr: Fl/Sgt. Kevin William Hennessy AUS/437579 RAAF Age 21. Killed
REASON FOR LOSS:
Taking off at 21:40 hrs from RAF Sandtoft, North Lincolnshire on a night cross-country exercise.
At around 02:10 hrs the Halifax dived out of control, it is thought that the aircraft had stalled. LL459 crashed killing all the crew onto the banks of the Humber in a field belonging to Hook House Farm at a place called Howden Dyke Island in a position about 600 yards North from the Church of St. Mary.
Above Halifax DG235 awaiting delivery - served with 1667 Heavy Conversion Unit.
Left: Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery
P/O. Raymond Leslie Francis. Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery. Sec B. Row E. Grave 12. Born on the 03rd July 1918 the son of Arthur John and Elizabeth Marion Francis, of Main Street, Rutherglen, Victoria, Australia. Prior to service employed as a Bank Clerk. Epitaph reads: ‘We Loved Him In Life, Let Us Not Forget Him In Death.’
Sgt. Frederick William Reed. Charing (Kent County) Crematorium. Son of Frederick and Ada Annie Reed, of Benenden, Kent, England.
Fl/Sgt. William Robert Rex Porter. Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery. Sec B. Row E. Grave 13. Born on the 04th June 1917 the son of Winfred Rex and Florence Eva Porter, of 65 Thistle Street, Bendigo, Victoria, Australia. Epitaph reads: ‘Lovingly Remembered.’
Fl/Sgt. William Edgar Laurence Moody. Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery. Sec B. Row E. Grave 14. Born on the 23rd January 1922 the son of Gilbert Raymond and Agnes Elizebeth Moody, of Hazelbrook, New South Wales, Australia. Epitaph reads: ‘Nobly He Lived And Nobly He Died. For Ever Remembered.’
Fl/Sgt. Gilbert Francis Brown. Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery. Sec B. Row E. Grave 10. Born on the 09th July 1923 the son of William John and Josephine Mary Brown, of Tolmie, Victoria, Australia. Epitaph reads: ‘His Duty Fearlessly And Nobly Done. Ever Remembered.’
Fl/Sgt. Kevin William Hennessy. Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery. Sec B. Row E. Grave 11. Born on the 12th November 1922 the son of William Henry and Mary Agnes Hennessy, of 16 Mora Avenue, Oakleigh, Victoria, Australia. Epitaph reads: ‘His Duty Fearlessly And Nobly Done. Ever Remembered.’
Researched and dedicated to the relatives of this crew with thanks to Diane Gollop for bringing this loss to our attention, Peter Lucas for grave photographs, other sources as shown below.