LIGHTBODY Robert Thomas 415668

LEST WE FORGET

Flight Sergeant Robert Thomas LIGHTBODY

Service No: 415668
Born: Perth WA, 16 March 1920
Enlisted in the RAAF: 7 December 1941
Unit: No. 614 Squadron (RAF), Celone, Italy
Died: Air Operations: (No. 614 Squadron Halifax aircraft JW890), Italy, 16 March 1944, Aged 24 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Robert and Jeanie Lightbody, of Mundijong, Western Australia.
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 16, Column 2, Malta Memorial, Malta
Remembered: Panel 125, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

Halifax JW890 of 614 Squadron took off from Celone, Italy, at 2311 hours on 15 March 1944 to carry out a sortie against marshalling yards at Sofia, Bulgaria. W/T (Wireless/Telephone) (radio) silence was observed until 0346 hours on 16 March when the aircraft signalled its estimated time of arrival (ETA) at base of 0410 hours. Nothing further was heard from JW 890 and it failed to return to base from the mission. The body of Sergeant Templer was recovered from the sea near Termoli on 16 May wearing a parachute and Mae West. A thorough search of the Termoli district was made but no trace of the remaining missing crew members was found. In 1947 it was recorded that they had lost their lives at sea.

The crew members of JW890 were:

Sergeant William Frederick Hearn (1679903) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Flight Sergeant Donald Herbert Jackson (1320939) (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Sergeant Walter Lee (1128219) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Robert Thomas Lightbody (415668) (Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant George Frederick Pridham (1393906) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber)
Sergeant P W Templer (1333368) (RAFVR) (Navigator)

References:

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, 166/24/397