Flight Sergeant Dixon Ross KEAST

Service No: 436038
Born: Bruce Rock WA, 28 September 1924
Enlisted in the RAAF: 2 November 1942
Unit: No. 1654 Conversion Unit (RAF), RAF Wigsley, Nottinghamshire
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 1654 Conversion Unit Lancaster aircraft ME440), Off the UK Coast, 5 February 1945, Aged 20 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of William Dixon Keast, and of Annie Mabel Keast, of Como, Western Australia.
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 284, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 125, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

Lancaster ME440 of 1654 Conversion Unit RAF took off from RAF Station Wigsley at 1326 hours on 5 December 1945 to carry out a non-operational cross country flight. The route was RAF Wigsley – Reading – Bodwin – The Skerries – Wigsley. The crew was briefed to fly at a height between 18,000 and 20,000 feet and at an air speed of 160 knots. At 1643 hours the aircraft was given a diversion, and this was acknowledged. At 1658 hours the presumed position of ME 440 was in the vicinity of Tudwells, approximately 6 miles south of Pwllheli, Wales. A further message was sent to the aircraft at 1706 hours but this was not acknowledged. Nothing further was heard from the aircraft and it did not return to base. Following post war enquiries and investigations, it was recorded in 1949 that the missing crew had lost their lives at sea

The crew members of ME440 were:

Sergeant William Burns (3022679) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Sergeant Alan Patrick Bulger 91796164) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Francis Dermot Byrne (1123766) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator, Staff)
Sergeant William Andrew Alcwyn Clark (619362) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant Coleman Glatt (1334205) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator)
Flight Sergeant Dixon Ross Keast (436038) (Pilot)
Sergeant Maurice Moore (1685692) (RAFVR) (Navigator)
Sergeant Frederick Arthur George Shaboe (1586237) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber)


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, 166/22/429

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