Flying Officer Walter Dinnathorne LANGWORTHY DFC

Service No: 408157
Born: Hobart TAS, 21 February 1913
Enlisted in the RAAF: 31 January 1941
Unit: No. 16 Operational Training Unit (RAF) / (No. 1655 Mosquito Training Unit)
Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), 14 May 1943
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 16 Operational Training Unit Mosquito aircraft DZ356), Hertfordshire, 7 January 1944, Aged 30 Years
Buried: Bath (Haycombe) Cemetery, Somerset
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Leslie William Saul and Emma Jane Langworthy; husband of Elsie Marion Langworthy, of St. Kilda, Victoria Australia
Roll of Honour: Devonport TAS
Remembered: Panel 125, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

DFC Citation: “As Navigator, Pilot Officer Langworthy has completed many successful sorties against very heavily defended targets in Germany and Italy. On one occasion he had a narrow escape when his seat in the aircraft was riddled with bullets. The aircraft was badly damaged and three members of the crew were wounded. With great coolness, Pilot Officer Langworthy not only navigated the badly disabled aircraft back to this country but also rendered effective aid to the wounded. His courage and skill have always been beyond praise.” (London Gazette 14 May/1943, Page 2156)

On 7 January 1944 Mosquito DZ356 took off from RAF Station Marham detailed to carry out a non-operational day training flight. The aircraft crashed at 1530 hours at Langtone Court, Llangarrow, Hertfordshire, 7 miles north of Monmouth, and both crew members were killed.

The crew members of DZ356 were:

Flight Lieutenant Kenneth Frank Jolly (88240) (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Flying Officer Walter Dinnathorne Langworthy DFC (408157) (Observer)

A report on the Accident stated: “from eye witnesses accounts, DK356 was flying followed by a second aircraft at a considerable height. There was an explosion from the leading aircraft which resulted in fire and disintegration of the aircraft, Flight Lieutenant Jolly was blown out of the aircraft without his chute which came down and opened out separately. The Observer used his chute although injured, but the canopy was torn and he died soon after the impact. The wreckage was spread over a four mile area with the main body of the aircraft being burnt out completely. Both engines broke away from their mountings while the aircraft was in mid-air. There was ample evidence that the reported fire in the air, originated in one of the engines.”


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, 166/29/257


Lang, Noella The Rest of My Life with No. 50 Squadron: from the diaries and letters of Flying Officer P W Rowling, Access Press, Northbridge WA 6000, 1997

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