Flight Sergeant Maurice Michael CULHANE

Service No: 438382
Born: Bunyip VIC, 20 September 1925
Enlisted in the RAAF: 8 October 1943
Unit: No. 1 Operational Training Unit
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 1 Operational Training Unit Beaufort aircraft A9-426), off Orbost VIC, 13 January 1945, Aged 19 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Michael and Agnes Bennet Culhane, of Hawthorn, Victoria
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 6, Sydney Memorial, Rookwood NSW
Remembered: Panel 112, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

At 2047 hours on the 12 January 1945 Beaufort A9-426 took off from East Sale to carry out a night flying exercise OT6. The route was East Sale-Paynesville-Western Junction-Paynesville-East Sale. The aircraft failed to return from the exercise. The last contact with the aircraft was at 0020 hours on 13 January 1945, when the aircraft asked for permission to change frequency and close down wireless telegraph communication. No further contact was made although listening watches were kept by East Sale, Bairnsdale and Mallacoota. Unsuccessful searches were carried out by air until 24 January 1945. A subsequent Court of Inquiry was of the opinion that the aircraft was in the vicinity of Paynesville, and that it was lost between 0320 and 0400 hours on 13 January 1945 in the Lake Coringle area south of Orbost.

The crew members of A9-426 were:

Flight Sergeant Ian Donald Blackie (430272) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Maurice Michael Culhane (438382) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant David James Blythman Simon (439551) (Navigator Bomb Aimer)
Flight Sergeant Roger Edwin Sullivan (431879) (Wireless Air Gunner)


Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/8/806; A9845, 257

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