Pilot Officer Desmond De Burgh CURTIS DFC

Service No: 402789
Born: Townsville QLD, 15 January 1922
Enlisted in the RAAF: 14 October 1940 (at Sydney NSW)
Unit: No. 156 Squadron (RAF), RAF Warboys, Cambridgeshire
Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), 3 April 1945 (Citation Title: No. 156 Squadron RAF)
Died: Air Operations (No. 156 Squadron Lancaster aircraft ED990), Germany, 7 September 1943, Aged 21Years
Buried: Durnbach War Cemetery, Bad Tolz, Bayern, Germany
CWGC Additional Information: Son of De Burgh Laurence and Eveline Annette Curtis, of Auburn, New South Wales, Australia.
Roll of Honour: Taree NSW
Remembered: Panel 121, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Former Commercial Banking Company of Sydney Head Office Honour Rolls, Sydney NSW
Remembered: Taree World War II and Post War Memorials, Taree NSW

DFC Citation: “Pilot Officer Curtis has displayed most commendable qualities as navigator and has taken part in many sorties including attacks on Hamburg and Milan and many on important targets in the Ruhr. Pilot Officer Curtis has set an outstanding example of skill and determination during both of his tours of operational duties.” (London Gazette 3/4/1945 Page 1784)

Lancaster ED990 took off from RAF Warboys at 1949 hours on the night of 6/7th September 1943, detailed to bomb Munich, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it failed to return to base. Later it was determined that all the crew had lost their lives.

The crew members of ED990 were:

Flying Officer George Bruce Clement (403687) (Air Bomber)
Pilot Officer Desmond De Burgh Curtis DFC (402789) (Navigator)
Pilot Officer Jack Fletcher DFM (156598) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Pilot Officer John Russell Hurst (156781) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flight Lieutenant Alan Montgomery Lutz DFC (406532) (Pilot)
Sergeant Kenneth Pearson DFM (1110204) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant William Simpson (1017292) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)


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
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/8/217
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line

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