Flying Officer Paul John Wallace KEELY

Service No: 669
Born: Malvern VIC, 31 January 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 8 January 1940 (at Essendon VIC)
Unit: No. 13 Squadron, Darwin NT
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 13 Squadron Hudson aircraft A16-8), off Darwin, 15 August 1941, Aged 26 Years
Buried: Adelaide River War Cemetery, NT
CWGC Additional Information: Son of John Francis and Eileen Mary Keely, of Frankston, Victoria
Roll of Honour: Malvern VIC
Remembered: Panel 100, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

The DVA record shows Flying Officer Keely enlisting from Victoria; however his is listed on the SA Memorial.

Sadly, on the 15th August, Hudson A16-8 with crew of Flying Officer Charlie Davies, Flying Officer Keely, WAG Max Hipkins and fitter Jim Curry crashed into the sea at the air gunnery range near Rapid Creek. Engine fitter Ray Moore (1) who was on duty at the range endeavoured to swim to the aircraft through blazing fuel in a vain attempt to extricate the crew, earning the first B.E.M. of the Squadron. All of the crew were killed but Flying Officer Davies’ body was not recovered. A full ceremonial R.A.A.F. funeral service was conducted at Darwin cemetery.

(1) Corporal Raymond David Moore BEM (5598) was discharged from the RAAF on 27 September 1946.

Extract from Grantham, S.R. (Sidney Richard) (6590) The 13 Squadron Story, S.R. Grantham, Dee Why NSW 2099, 1991 – Page 29

At 1145 hours on 15 August 1941, while diving during air-to-ground gunnery, A16-8 failed to come out of the dive and the wing struck the target. The port engine fell off and the aircraft crashed into the sea about 200 metres beyond the target.

The crew members of A16-8 were:

Leading Aircraftman James Currie (8813) (Flight Mechanic)
Flying Officer Murray Charles Davies (637) (Pilot)
Sergeant Maxwell Alexander Hipkins (400176) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Paul John Wallace Keely (669) (Second Pilot)


Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A9845, 134


Vincent, D. (David) The RAAF Hudson Story Book 1, D. Vincent Highbury SA 5089, 1989
Wilson, S. (Stewart) Anson, Hudson and Sunderland in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1992

Book Now Book Now