ACRES Robert Joseph 427787

LEST WE FORGET 

Pilot Officer Robert Joseph ACRES 

Service No: 427787
Born: Angaston SA, 26 May 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 6 October 1942 (at Perth WA)
Unit: No. 463 Squadron, RAF Waddington UK
Died: Air Operations: (No. 463 Squadron Lancaster aircraft LM587), France, 26 September 1944, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Wissant Communal Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Joseph and Nellie Sylvia Acres of Leederville WA
Roll of Honour: Perth WA
Remembered: Panel 109, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

Linked with the air campaign against Calais were two heavy attacks on 26th and 28th September against fortified areas protecting the German long-range guns at Cap Gris Nez. The first raid by 531 aircraft (including 29 of No. 460, 13 of 462 and 13 of 466) plastered the area with over 2,800 tons of bombs and although the second raid was spoilt by weather more than another 800 tons were dropped. The German garrison at Cap Gris Nez surrendered on 29th September to Canadian forces which next day also occupied Calais.

Extract from Herington, J. (John) (406545) Air War Over Europe 1944-1945, Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 1963 – Page 267

Lancaster LM587 took off from RAF Waddington on 26 September 1944 to bomb enemy strong points at Cap Gris Nez, France. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it did not return to base.  Post war it was established that the aircraft crashed at Wissant (Pas De Calais). Wissant is a small village on the coastal highway between Calais and Boulogne, France.

The crew members of LM587 were:

Pilot Officer Robert Joseph Acres (427787) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Flying Officer Norman Jack Bowman (418913) (Rear Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Ronald Charles Brookman (410144) (Navigator)
Warrant Officer Beresford George Douglas Dillon (426253) (Bomb Aimer)
Flying Officer John Edward Morris (171018) (RAFVR) (Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Maurice Alvey Oakley (158226) (RAFVR) (Navigator)
Flight Sergeant Reginald James Patrick (1583253) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Pilot Officer Sidney Wallace Smith (410819) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner)
Flight Lieutenant Anthony Bowen Loftus Tottenham DFC (418209) (Pilot)

References:

Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records (RAAF Casualty Information compiled by Alan Storr (409804))
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/3/285