Sergeant Francis John McNeil BARBER

Service No: 413475
Born: Longreach QLD, 25 September 1919
Enlisted in the RAAF: 17 August 1941 (at Sydney NSW)
Unit: No. 2 Elementary Flying Training School RAF
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 2 Elementary Flying Training School Tiger Moth aircraft R5203), Moreton-in-Marsh, 22 March 1943, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Moreton-in-Marsh New Cemetery, Gloucestershire
CWGC Additional Information: Son of John Thomas Ellesban Barber and Agnes Isabelle Barber, of Trangie, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: Warren NSW
Remembered: Panel 118, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

On a non-operational day flight on 22 March 1943, Tiger Moth R5203 crashed at 1430 hours and both the crew members were killed. The aircraft carried out two loops at approximately 600 feet over the Moreton-in-Marsh aerodrome. The aircraft then went into a succession of steep dives and climbs coming down to as low as 150 to 200 feet. At the end of the last climb, the aircraft appeared to stall on the top of a climb, and then dive into the ground. The Pilot was carrying out unauthorised low flying aerobatics.

The crew members of R5203 were:

Sergeant Francis John McNeil Barber (413475) (Pilot)
Sergeant Orval Clarence Dunn (R/134678) (RCAF) (Navigator)


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, 166/5/94

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