Corporal Neville Lawrence ERNST

Service No: 12305
Born: West Maitland NSW, 25 January 1918
Enlisted in the RAAF: 19 February 1940
Unit: No. 11 Squadron, Port Moresby PNG
Died: Aircraft Accident: (No. 11 Squadron Catalina aircraft A24-15), near Port Moresby, 8 December 1941, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Port Moresby (Bomana) War Cemetery, PNG
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Jacob and Vera Pearl Ernst, of Rose Bay, New South Wales
Roll of Honour: Rose Bay NSW
Remembered: Panel 100, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Catalina Base Memorial, Rathmines NSW

At 2215 hours on 8 December 1942, Catalina A24-15 struck a hill on the western side of Port Moresby harbour just after takeoff and all eight crew members were killed. Those crew members were:

Corporal Neville Lawrence Ernst (12305) (Fitter II Engines)
Aircraftman Class 1 Arthur Wallace Magee (33987) (Wireless Equipment Mechanic)
Leading Aircraftman Charles James Matheson (10436) (Fitter II Engines)
Corporal Eric John O’Donnell (12257) (Fitter II Airframe)
Aircraftman Class 1 George Robert Peterson (39219) (Fitter Armourer)
Flight Lieutenant Nelson Prior Reid (557) (Pilot)
Aircraftman Class 1 Keith Mighell Sidey (34551) (Wireless Equipment Mechanic)
Flying Officer Lincoln James Sloan (2622) (Co-Pilot)


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, 145
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line


McFarlane, C.C. (Cyrus C.) Tojo’s Fate: Australia’s secret war, Sid Harta Publishers Glen Waverley VIC 3150, 2009
McMillan A. (Andrew) Catalina Dreaming: rescues exciting missions and other stories about the famous Australian flying boats of WWII, Duffy and Snellgrove Potts Point NSW, 2002
Wilson, S. (Stewart) Catalina, Neptune and Orion in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1991