LEST WE FORGET

Sergeant John Henry NORMAN

Service No: 405765
Born: Liscard, England, 12 October 1919
Enlisted in the RAAF: 25 May 1941 (at Brisbane QLD)
Unit: No. 306 Flying Training Unit (RAF) (No. 17 Group, Coastal Command)
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 306 Flying Training Unit Beaufort aircraft DK124), Wales, 1 April 1943, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Wallasey (Rake Lane) Cemetery, Cheshire
CWGC Additional Information: Son of William Henry and Kathleen Norman, of Townsville, Queensland. Australia
Roll of Honour: Townsville QLD
Remembered: Panel 128, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

On 1 April 1943, Beaufort DK124 took off on a day navigation training exercise and crashed at 1009 hours at Redstone Cross, near Narbeth, Pembrokeshire, Wales. Three of the crew members were killed and one was injured.

The crew members of DK124 were:

Sergeant Vivian James Ackroyd (415510) (RNZAF) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant Stewart Colclough (1236367) (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Sergeant John Henry Norman (405765) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant S Rudd (1425821) (RAFVR) (Navigator Bomb Aimer) Injured

Sergeant Rudd later stated: “at approximately 800 feet after completing a circuit, the starboard engine gradually failed. The Pilot recalled me from the nose compartment to sit beside him. The pilot was unable to maintain height and warned the crew he was going to force land. The aircraft hit the ground at high speed with the right wing low and crashed.” An inquiry into the accident found that: “the starboard engine failed because of petrol starvation. The engine failure was due to the Pilot turning on a wrong tank setting.” The aircraft took off with all tanks full.

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 Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/30/6