Sergeant Robert George Ashley BRATHWAITE

Service No: 403312
Born: Tokomaru Bay New Zealand, 22 March 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 6 June 1941 (at Sydney NSW)
Unit: No. 20 Operational Training Unit (RAF), RAF station Lossiemouth
Died: Air Operations (No. 20 Operational Training Unit Wellington aircraft T2723), Netherlands, 26 June 1942, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Terschelling (West-Terschelling) General Cemetery, Friesland, Netherlands
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Harold Ashley Brathwaite and Agnes Maud Brathwaite, of Killara, New South Wales, Australia. LL.B. (Sydney), Barrister
Roll of Honour: Sydney NSW
Remembered: Panel 119, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Wellington T2723 took off from Lossiemouth at 2241 hours on the night of 25/26 June 1942, detailed to attack Bremen, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it failed to return to base. The aircraft crashed at West Terschelling Island on the 26 June 1942. Three of the crew members were killed and two became Prisoners of War.

The crew members of T2723 were:

Sergeant Robert George Ashley Brathwaite (403312) (Observer)
Sergeant William Alan Carruthers (1063043) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant N W Levasseur (R/83181) (RCAF) (Pilot) PoW
Flight Sergeant Robert Cresswell Marchant (R/92040) (RCAF) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant G C Thomson (R/91859) (RCAF) (Rear Gunner) PoW

In later POW reports Sergeant Levasseur stated: “Sergeant Brathwaite was killed as a result of their aircraft being attacked by a German fighter.” Sergeant Thompson stated “that he believes Sergeant Brathwaite was killed, but the only information to confirm this was received by him from a German Officer while he was in Amsterdam hospital. He also stated that the aircraft was attacked by a night fighter, the inter com was destroyed. As Rear Gunner I was cut off from the rest of the crew and the aircraft was set on fire. With the intercom unserviceable I can only give information from German authorities.”


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, 165/93/558

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