Pilot Officer James Ian McKECHNIE

Service No: 416312
Born: Adelaide SA, 5 June 1922
Enlisted in the RAAF: 24 May 1941
Unit: No. 32 Squadron, Lowood QLD
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 32 Squadron Beaufort aircraft A9-436), Bundaberg, 21 April 1944, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Bundaberg General Cemetery, QLD
CWGC Additional Information: Son of James Willon McKechnie and Myrtle Dorothea McKechnie, of Alice Springs, Northern Territory
Roll of Honour: Henley Beach SA
Remembered: Panel 103, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

Duration formation flying on 21 April 1944, No. 32 Squadron Beaufort aircraft A9-436 and A9-476 had a mid-air collision 20 km west of Bundaberg and all eight crew members from both aircraft were killed.

The crew members of A9-436 were:

Flight Sergeant Richard McDougall Garland (412584) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Pilot Officer James Ian McKechnie (416312) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Irwin Harold Smead (419228) (Navigator Bomb Aimer)
Flight Sergeant John Bertram Steed (425371) (Pilot)

The crew members of A9-476 were:

Flight Sergeant Ian James Dixon (423672) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flying Officer John Eric Gay (434085) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Milton Charles Hardy (422177) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Ignatius William Willcocks (419425) (Navigator Bomb Aimer)


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, 176


Graham, B. (Burton) and Frank Smyth, A Nation Grew Wings: The Story of the RAAF Beaufort Squadrons in New Guinea, Winterset House Publishers Melbourne VIC, 1946
Wilson, S. (Stewart) Beaufort, Beaufighter and Mosquito in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1990

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