LEST WE FORGET

Flying Officer Alfred Neil BUCKLAND

Service No: 420612
Born: Marrickville NSW, 20 February 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 8 November 1941
Unit: No. 10 Squadron, RAF Mount Batten, Plymouth
Died: Air Operations (No. 10 Squadron Sunderland aircraft DV969), Atlantic Ocean, 21 September 1943, Aged 28 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Alfred Thomas Buckland and Ruby Evelyn Clare Buckland, of Croydon, New South Wales, Australia.
Roll of Honour: Ashfield NSW
Remembered: Panel 187, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 99, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Rathmines Memorial Bowling Club, Rathmines NSW

On 21 September a Sunderland of No. 10 transmitted an incomplete combat report and then failed to return to Mount Batten. A wide search for this aircraft revealed no trace of survivors, although earlier in the month both Australian squadrons (Nos 10 and 461) had spent an appreciable number of patrols in successful air-sea rescue operations for other airmen lost in similar circumstances. In each case the final rescue was effected by naval vessels directed to the scene after intervals varying from a few hours to several days, during which time the Sunderlands kept in continuous contact with the dinghies.

Extract from Herington, J. (John) (406545) Air War Against Germany and Italy 1939-1943, Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 1954 – Pages 620-1

The crew members of DV969 were:

Flying Officer Alfred Neil Buckland (420612) (Second Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Colin Stewart Cameron (422410) (Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Albert Lawrence Coomes (401768) (Navigator)
Sergeant James David Thomas Daley (419929) (Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Arthur William Morphett Gunson (417178) (Third Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Donald Harris (415529) (Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Alexander Glenn Jennison (409000) (Pilot)
Sergeant Jack Thomas Law (17383) (Flight Engineer)
Sergeant Sydney Charles Edwin Leech (19458) (Fitter IIE)
Flight Sergeant Norman Douglas Kerr Swinton (408319) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Lawrence Ernest Waddington (408410) (Wireless Air Gunner)

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
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, BUCKLAND A N

Bibliography:

Ashworth, N. (Norman) The ANZAC Squadron: A history of No. 461 Squadron RAAF 1942-5, Hesperian Press Victoria Park WA 6100, 1994
Baff, K.C (Kevin), Maritime is Number Ten, K.C. Baff Netley SA, 1983
Joubert, P.B. (Sir Phillip Bennet) Birds and Fishes: the story of Coastal Command, Hutchinson and Company London, 1960
Southall, I.F. (Ivan Francis) (418900) They Shall Not Pass Unseen, Angus and Robertson Sydney NSW, 1956
Wilson, S. (Stewart) Anson, Hudson and Sunderland in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1992