Sergeant Alfred Thomas Bruce HALE

Service No: 4708
Born: Queenstown TAS, 20 January 1918
Enlisted in the RAAF: 4 September 1939
Unit: No. 3 Squadron
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 55 Squadron Blenheim IV aircraft V5514), Egypt, 10 May 1941, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Alexandra (Chatby) Military and Memorial Cemetery, Egypt
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Alfred and Alice Maud Hale, of Strahan, Tasmania, Australia
Roll of Honour: Strahan TAS
Remembered: Panel 98, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Blenheim V5514 took off from Landing Ground 95 (Base Landing Ground) with another Blenheim of No. 55 Squadron to return to the Operational Landing Ground (LG 15, Maaten Bagush). The other machine developed engine trouble and the two landed at LG 28 (Burg-el-Arab), both crews (and two passengers) packing into V5514. En route to Maaten Bagush a severe sandstorm was encountered and the aircraft turned back to LG 28 where, attempting a landing in poor light, V5514 hit Magister R1974 parked on the airfield boundary, bounced into another Blenheim, broke up and burst into flames, killing all but one on board.

On board V5514 were:

Leading Aircraftman Edward Buckley (649548) (RAF)
Flight Sergeant Robert Davies (749560) (RAFVR) (Observer)
Sergeant J Davison (RAF) Survived
Flight Sergeant James Dowling Duffy (517479) (RAF) (Observer)
Sergeant Alfred Thomas Bruce Hale (4708) (Wireless Air Gunner) No. 3 Squadron RAAF
Flying Officer Robert Holden Nicolson MID (40938) (RAF) (Pilot V5514))
Flight Sergeant Henry Rhodes DFM (580588) (RAF) (Observer)
Pilot Officer John Lendrum van Breda (60316) (RAFVR) (Pilot)


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 Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
Gunby D (David) and Pelham Temple, Royal Air Force Bomber Losses in the Middle East and Mediterranean, Volume 1 1939-1942, Midland Publishing UK, 2006
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 163/120/197

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