Air Operations: (No. 458 Squadron Wellington aircraft HX677), off Sicily, 27 April 1943

The No. 458 Squadron Operations Record Book records the following “On the night of 27/28th April 1943 one special Wellington to off at 2015 hours to search for enemy shipping off the west coast of Italy. At 2325 hours two medium size merchant vessels escorted by a destroyer were sighted in position 39.10N 13.22E, course 270 deg, speed 8 knots. A sighting report was sent to base. The aircraft acknowledged a signal from base at 0124 hours but it failed to return from the mission.”

The crew members of HX677 were:

Sergeant Kenneth Templeton Bates (946569) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator)
Pilot Officer Robert William Joseph Hudson (J/17587) (RCAF) (Navigator)
Sergeant James Reid Hunter (1020873) (RAFVR) (Special Equipment (Radar) Operator)
Sergeant Walter Scott Lees (1020882) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Sergeant Thomas Eric Musto (1316142) (RAFVR) (Second Pilot)
Flying Officer Michael Tuckwell (137297) (RAFVR) (Pilot)

Flying Officer Tuckwell is buried in the Catania War Cemetery, Sicily. The other crew members are missing and their names are commemorated on the Malta Memorial.


Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records (RAAF Casualty Information compiled by Alan Storr (409804))
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records


Alexander, P. (Peter) We Find and Destroy: history of No. 458 Squadron, The 458 Squadron Council, 1959

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