CONNELL George Roy 427802

LEST WE FORGET

Flying Officer George Roy CONNELL 

Service No: 427802
Born: Fremantle WA, 25 April 1923
Enlisted in the RAAF: 6 October 1942
Unit: No. 35 Squadron, Townsville QLD
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 35 Squadron Dakota aircraft A65-83), Arafura Sea, 19 December 1945, Aged 22 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Victor Roy and Jane Connell, of Fremantle, Western Australia.
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Column 8, Ambon Memorial, Indonesia
Remembered: Panel 103, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

Signal Received to the effect that Squadron aircraft VH-CLZ is overdue on flight from Ambon to Darwin.  Crew comprises Flying Officer F. Robinson (Captain), Flight Lieutenant N.J. Hazle (Co-Pilot), Pilot Officer G. Connell (Wireless Operator Air Gunner) and Sergeant P. Bodley (Navigator).  There are also 21 passengers on board.

No. 35 Squadron Operations Record Book A50 Entry dated 20 December 1945.

Received advice from D.T.M. (Directorate of Transport and Movements) Melbourne that Naval Authorities at Darwin had received message “All Alive”.  Bearings were obtained on signal but searches were negative.

No. 35 Squadron Operations Record Book A50 Entry dated 21 December 1945.

In terms of lives lost, the disappearance of A65-83 with twenty five lives is one of the worst accidents in the history of the RAAF.  No trace of the crew or passengers has been found despite an extensive search lasting 17 days.

On board A65-83 were:

Crew Members:

Flight Sergeant Francis Bodley (440688) (Navigator)
Flying Officer George Roy Connell (427802) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner)
Flight Lieutenant Neville John Hazle (401818) (Co-Pilot)
Flying Officer Frank Robinson (429742) (Pilot and Aircraft Captain)

Passengers:

Private Reevel Alderson (SX25921) (Australian Army)

Craftsman Walter Kingsford Arcus (NX96202) (Australian Army)
Craftsman Leonard Norman Arnold (NX118494) (Australian Army)
Private Joseph Raymond Berg (WX40262) (Australian Army)
Private Robert Bowles (SX25926) (Australian Army)
Captain John Frederick Richard Burnett (WX28702) (Australian Army)
Private Francis Richard Carter (NX192467) (Australian Army)
Sapper Samuel Edley Evans (SX38810) (Australian Army)
Private William John Geoghegan (QX59229) (Australian Army)
Able Seaman Neil Arthur Gibson (F/V342) (RAN)
Corporal Reginald Zebulun Green (WX41628) (Australian Army)
Private Keith Wilson Longdill Krippner (NX203070) (Australian Army)
Corporal Leonard Ronald Lishmund (SX33581) (Australian Army)
Private Francis McCarthy (WX22722) (Australian Army)
Sergeant William Mullen (60195) (RAAF)
Private John Raymond Pearsall (NX170651) (Australian Army)
Signalman James Desmond Pollard (SX25076) (Australian Army)
Gunner Harold Robins (WX37504) (Australian Army)
Captain Colin Thomas Walton (NX6204) (Australian Army)
Sapper Joseph Michael Wilson (WX21115) (Australian Army)
Leading Aircraftman Leslie Hamilton Wilson (139475) (RAAF) (Medical Orderly)

References:

Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A9845, 118

Bibliography:

Wilson, S. (Stewart) Dakota, Hercules and Caribou in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1990