Flight Sergeant Sidney James KING

Service No: 410675
Born: 3 April 1923, Location unavailable
Enlisted in the RAAF: 31 January 1942 (at Melbourne VIC)
Unit: No. 50 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station Skellingthorpe
Died: Air Operations: (No. 50 Squadron Lancaster aircraft ED475), North Sea, 10 July 1943, Aged 20 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Sidney George and Elizabeth Margaret King, of Cavendish, Victoria, Australia
Roll of Honour: Cavendish VIC
Remembered: Panel 193, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 125, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

At 2240 hours on 9 July 1943 Lancaster ED475 took off from Skellingthorpe to attack Gelsenkirchen, Germany. ED475 attacked the target from 18,000 feet and was then damaged by anti-aircraft fire over the target area, and the port and starboard inner engines were hit and the petrol system holed. The engines gave trouble on the way home, and when crossing the French coast the starboard inner engine caught fire. The Captain ordered the crew to abandon the aircraft and Flight Sergeant King obeyed, baling out over the coast. The front rescue hatch became jammed and the Captain cancelled the order to abandon the aircraft when the navigator informed him they were over the sea. Although the fire abated, the engines lost power and the aircraft ditched at 0350 hours in the sea. All the remaining crew members were picked up 90 minutes later in the dinghy, about 4 miles off Hastings. It was later recorded that Flight Sergeant King had no known grave.

The crew members of ED475 were:

Sergeant G Batey (650588) (RAF) (Air Gunner) Rescued
Flying Officer J Brett (130599) (RAFVR) (Navigator) Rescued
Sergeant J Clifford (1336560) (RAFVR) (Pilot) Rescued
Flight Sergeant Sidney James King (410675) (Air Gunner)
Sergeant T McKenna (515918) (RAF) (Flight Engineer) Rescued
Sergeant J Short (1330128) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner) Rescued
Sergeant K A Wargent (1337785) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber) Rescued


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, 166/22/87

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