Flight Sergeant William Russell JAGER

Service No: 409923
Born: Thornbury VIC, 4 June 1918
Enlisted in the RAAF: 7 November 1941
Unit: No. 15 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station Mildenhall
Died: Air Operations: (No. 15 Squadron Lancaster aircraft W4852), Germany, 21 January 1944, Aged 25 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Ernest Harry and Florence Mabel Jager, of Thornbury, Victoria, Australia
Roll of Honour: Northcote VIC
Remembered: Panel 260, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 124, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

At 2020 hours on 21January 1944 Lancaster W4852 took off from Mildenhall to attack Magdeberg, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take-off and it did not return to base. German documents revealed that the aircraft had crashed near the village of Wormlitz in the Jericho district at 1150 hours on the 21 January 1944. All the crew members were killed.

The crew members of W4852 were:

Flight Sergeant Joseph Stanley Bergin (402533) (RNZAF) (Navigator)
Pilot Officer Robert John Butler (170230) (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Richard Frank Bernard Holborow (1191808) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air)
Flight Sergeant William Russell Jager (409923) (Air Bomber)
Flight Sergeant Kenneth Alexander Porteous (1506078) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Sergeant Cyril Edward Smith (1202361) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Sergeant Andrew Bernard Summers (547067) (RAF) (Mid Upper Gunner)

The bodies of Pilot Officer Butler, Flight Sergeants Jager and Proteious and Sergeant Summers together with the other three who could not be identified were buried. The records did not indicate the place of burial. A thorough search of the Jericho district was made but the graves of the crew members could not be found. It was subsequently recorded that they had no known graves.


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, 166/20/97

Book Now Book Now