Flying Officer John Dennis COWLEY

Service No: 421188
Born: Granville NSW, 15 September 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 31 January 1942
Unit: No. 31 Squadron
Died: Air Operations (No. 31 Squadron Beaufighter aircraft A8-191), Borneo, 11 June 1945, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Edward John and Winifred Doris Cowley, of Granville, New South Wales
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 32, Labuan Memorial, Malaysia
Remembered: Panel 102, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Arthur Phillip High School World War II Roll of Honour, Parramatta NSW

On 11 June 1945, Beaufighter A8-191 was one on seven aircraft detailed to provide direct bombing support for Operation Oboe 6. A8-191 took off in the normal manner in extremely dark conditions. After take-off, the aircraft was seen to climb straight ahead for a short distance then do a right turn at low level. It was then seen to be losing height and crashed into the sea about five miles south west of the Sanga Sanga airstrip. Both crew members were killed in the crash.

The crew members of A81-91 were:

Flying Officer John Dennis Cowley (421188) (Pilot)
Flying Officer Michael Joseph Wall (49326) (Navigator)


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, 166/8/1051; A9845, 57
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line


Parnell, N.M. (Neville M.) Whispering Death: A history of the RAAF’s Beaufighter Squadrons, AH & AW Reed, Terry Hills NSW, 1980
Wilson, S. (Stewart) Beaufort, Beaufighter and Mosquito in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1990

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