LEST WE FORGET

Flight Sergeant Francis Edward CHANNON

Service No: 402030
Born: Balmain NSW, 23 April 1920
Enlisted in the RAAF: 28 April 1940
Unit: No. 8 Squadron (RAF)
Died: Air Operations (No. 8 Squadron Blenheim aircraft Z7920), near Djibouti, 17 July 1942, Aged 22 Years
Buried: Djibouti New European Cemetery, Djibouti
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Thomas Henry and Martha Ann Channon, of Liverpool, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: Liverpool NSW
Remembered: Panel 120, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Blenheim Z7920 was ordered to proceed to Hargeisha on detachment leaving Kharmaksar at 1230Z hours on 15 July 1942, and carrying the crew and passengers. Enroute the aircraft was required to carry out a reconnaissance of Djibouti aerodrome. The aircraft took off and received the radio go. Nothing was heard from the aircraft and it failed to arrive at its destination. Hargeisha reported that the aircraft had not arrived. On 16 July extensive searches were carried out but no trace of the missing aircraft or crew was found. On 18 July a report was received that the aircraft had been shot down near Djubiti by anti-aircraft fire at 1600 hours on 17 July 1942, and had crashed in flames. All those on board were killed.

The crew members of Z7920 were:

Flight Sergeant Francis Edward Channon (402030) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Pilot Officer Lawrence Robert Maguire (J/151001) (RCAF) (Pilot)
Sergeant Victor Percy Crawford Sennet (929434) (RAFVR) (Observer)
Aircraftman Class I Harold Lewis Sneath (614297) (RAF) (Fitter)
Corporal Hamilton Wray (532586) (RAF) (Fitter)

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, 163/96/151