LEST WE FORGET
Flying Officer Bruce Horace ANDERSON
Service No: 260770
Born: Sydney NSW, 24 October 1916
Enlisted in the RAAF: 4 March 1940
Unit: No. 75 Squadron
Died: Air Operations (No. 75 Squadron Kittyhawk aircraft A29-16), near Lae PNG, 22 March 1942, Aged 25 Years
CWGC Additional Information: Son of James William Falconer Anderson and Winifred Alice Anderson, of Bellevue Hill, New South Wales.
Roll of Honour: Sydney NSW
Remembered: Panel 6, Lae Memorial PNG
Remembered: Panel 103, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Honour Roll of Old Newingtonians, Stanmore NSW
Remembered: St Peter’s Anglican Church World War 2 Honour Roll, Cremorne NSW
On 20 January 1942, Flying Officer Anderson survived the loss of No. 24 Squadron Wirraway A20-71 at Rabaul, Papua New Guinea, when six RAAF members including from the Squadron including Sergeant Robert Alfred Blackman (402844) were killed.
At about 0800 hours on 22 March 1942, Kittyhawk A29-16 was one of nine aircraft carrying out a ground strafing operation on the aerodrome, at Lae Papua New Guinea. Five of the aircraft including A29-16 were to carry out the strafing attack and four were to provide “top cover”. The aerodrome was approached from the sea at a low height beneath broken cloud with a base down to 1,000 feet and the enemy were taken by complete surprise. Two attacks were carried out by the ground strafe party, and during the second attack, A29-16 was hit by light anti-aircraft fire and crashed. As the aircraft were about to leave, three Japanese Zeros which must have been up very high on a standing patrol, dived down to intercept the top cover aircraft at about 6,500 feet. The top cover aircraft engaged the enemy without any observed result. Searches for the missing A29-16 found no trace of the aircraft or pilot.
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 Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 163/22/111
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line