FITZGERALD Edward Charles 436403

LEST WE FORGET

Flight Sergeant Edward Charles FITZGERALD

Service No: 436403
Born: Perth WA, 10 October 1924
Enlisted in the RAAF: 2 January 1943
Unit: No. 40 Squadron (RAF), Foggia Main, Italy
Died: Air Operations: Mediterranean and Italian Fronts 1944-5 (No. 40 Squadron Wellington aircraft LP464), Italy, 11 October 1944, Aged 20 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Thomas and Rose Louisa Fitzgerald, of Yallourn, Victoria, Australia.
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 16, Column 2, Malta Memorial, Malta
Remembered: Panel 122, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

On 11 October 1944 Wellington LP464 of 40 Squadron was detailed to attack an enemy target at Verona, Italy. LP 464 was one of three aircraft that failed to return from the mission. One aircraft was seen to go down on fire and successfully ditch, as a green light was seen floating intermittently. Two other aircraft were seen shot down over the target and a Rear gunner saw five parachutes bale out from one of these aircraft. Following post war enquiries and investigations, 6 graves were exhumed in the Verona cemetery but it was not possible to identify the remains. The missing crew members were recorded as having no known grave.

The crew members of LP464 were:

Warrant Officer Ronald William Frederick Bodley (1392669) (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Sergeant Arthur Gordon Butcher (1331519) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner)
Sergeant Gerald Coyle (551595) (RAF) (Air Bomber)
Flight Sergeant Edward Charles Fitzgerald (436403) (Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Leslie Robert Johnston (426605) (Navigator)

References:

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 A705,166/13/325