LEST WE FORGET

Flight Lieutenant Leonard Alfred JACKSON

Service No: 421222
Born: Sydney NSW, 14 March 1918
Enlisted in the RAAF: 31 January 1942
Unit: No. 14 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station St Eval
Died: Air Operations: (No. 14 Squadron Wellington aircraft NC419), Cornwall, 19 April 1945, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Walter Henry and Lillie May Jackson; husband of Bernice Gwen Jackson, of Balmain, New South Wales, Australia. Chartered Accountant
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 282, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 124, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Boronia Park Epping Cenotaph, Epping NSW
Remembered: Epping War Memorial, Epping NSW

On the night of 18 April 1945 Wellington NC 419 took off from St Eval on an anti-submarine patrol when it crashed 4 miles north north east of Newquay. Local night flying at St Eval had ceased at 2315 hours and lights apart from the Pundit were extinguished about 2335 hours. Pilots had reported that the flying conditions were excellent. At about 2345 hours an aircraft was heard calling (it was thought Rushbrooke (Ballykelly)) and asking for lights for an emergency landing.  The airfield controller at St Eval reported an aircraft without lights flying in the vicinity. The pilot was contacted and he stated that he had a fuel leak. Lights were put on and the pilot instructed which runway to use and the directions to come in. No further satisfactory contact was made with the aircraft, although it was repeatedly called and asked if flood lights were required. The aircraft could be seen flying in tight circuits at about 200 feet and losing height at each circuit and it crashed on the cliffs near Trenance village at 0005 hours. The bodies were recovered and buried while the other crew members were recorded as missing lost at sea.

The crew members of NC419 were:

Flight Sergeant Leonard Cross Barker (1129589) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator/Air) Remains recovered
Flight Lieutenant Mervin Cooksley Hogg MID (J/20942) (RCAF) (Pilot)
Flight Lieutenant Leonard Alfred Jackson (421222) (Navigator)
Flight Sergeant Edward Pearson (1671428) (RAFVR) (Second Pilot)
Flying Officer George Sydney Smith (J/90948) (RCAF) (Wireless Operator/Air) Remains recovered
Flight Sergeant Ronald Derek Speak (1522475) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator/Air)

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 Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/20/263
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line

Bibliography:

Napier, Michael Winged Crusaders: the exploits of 14 Squadron RFC & RAF 1915-1945, Pen & Sword Books, Barnsley UK, 2012