LEST WE FORGET

Sergeant Alan Frank BELL

Service No: 419924
Born: Lilydale VIC, 10 April 1912
Enlisted in the RAAF: 9 October 1942
Unit: No. 4 (Coastal) Operational Training Unit (RAF)
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 4 (Coastal) Operational Training Unit Sunderland aircraft DD839), Cromarty Firth, 27 November 1943, Aged 31 Years
Buried: Rosskeen Parish Churchyard Extension (or Burial Grounds) Invergordon, Ross and Cromarty
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Francis and Elsie Bell, of Kongwak, Victoria, Australia
Roll of Honour: Korumburra VIC
Remembered: Panel 118, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

On 27 November 1943 Sunderland DD839 was detailed to carry out a night flying practice non-operational flight. The aircraft crashed at 1930 hours while landing in Cromarty Firth, at Alness and three crew members were killed and the others injured. The crash was considered to be an error of judgement by the Pilot.

The crew members of DD839 were:

Sergeant Alan Frank Bell (419924) (Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Geoffrey Henry Davidson (410219) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Arthur Edward Evers (425290) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner) Injured, Discharged from the RAAF: 22 February 1946
Flying Officer Alan Vincent Gloor (421266) (Pilot) Injured Discharged from the RAAF: 18 January 1946
Flight Sergeant Donald Murray Jorgensen (416342) (Second Pilot) Injured Discharged from the RAAF: 30 January 1946
Flight Sergeant John Hubert Mellersh (405758) (Observer)
Sergeant Robert George Patterson (427042) (Air Gunner) Injured Discharged from the RAAF: 6 November 1945
Flight Sergeant H J Wilson (549504) (RAF) Injured

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 Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/5/355