Warrant Officer Henry James DEESTER

Service No: 414340
Born: Charters Towers QLD, 1 January 1916
Enlisted in the RAAF: 13 September 1941
Unit: No. 62 Squadron (RAF)
Died: Air Operations: (No. 62 Squadron Dakota aircraft FZ548), Assam, 15 June 1944, Aged 28 Years
Buried: Kohima War Cemetery, Assam, India
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Henry James Deester and Edith Deester; husband of Doris Lilian Deester, of West Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia
Roll of Honour: Rockhampton QLD
Remembered: Panel 121, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

On 11 June 1944 Dakota FZ548 based at Agartala was detailed to carry Army reinforcements to Imphal, India. The aircraft failed to arrive at its destination. On 15 June 1944 124 RAF Support Unit advised that local residents had reported that a low flying aircraft had exploded in the air and that they saw wing root fillers fall off. The crashed aircraft was located in the Karingaj (Silchar) area in the province of Assam. It was in a ploughed paddy field and was fully immersed in water at a depth of 10 feet. All the crew members were killed together with the 23 British Army Members travelling as passengers.

The crew members of FZ548 were:

Flying Officer Neville William Barton Brady DFC (414372) (Pilot)
Warrant Officer Hennry James Deester (414340) (Navigator)
Pilot Officer Douglas Edward Jones DFM (J/87814) (RCAF) (Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Arthur James Read (1213566) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air)

The passengers on FZ548 were:

Private John Airlie (3315246) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Sergeant David Anderson (3184580) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private Charles Robert Bradwell (3197199) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private George Brotherson (3194776) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Rifleman James Coutts (14529924) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Lieutenant John Deneys Croasdale (315048) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private Joseph Dickson (2993334) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private John George Gammage (14228411) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Second Lieutenant Roy Henry Harries (324474) (Royal Armoured Corps)
Private William John Harris (14401131) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private John Kerr (3196119) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private George Septimus Maitland (3252552) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private Patrick Matthews (6980394) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Fusilier Leo Quinn (14438747) (Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers)
Private Arthur Thomas Roberts (14641135) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private Arthur Robert Rollins (6984022) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Fusilier George William Rowbottom (6984025) (Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers)
Fusilier Percival John Saunderson (14433126) (Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers)
Fusilier Jack Scott (14609191) (Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers)
Fusilier Albert Shanks (6980214) (Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers)
Private James Tuite Slane (2991992) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Private Thomas Stein (3196119) (Kings Own Scottish Borderers)
Fusilier Stanley Whapshott (14650723) (Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers)


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, 166/6/572

Book Now Book Now