LEST WE FORGET

Flight Sergeant Walter Harold OAKES

Service No: 405082
Born: Sydney NSW, 17 December 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 6 January 1941 (at Brisbane QLD)
Unit: No. 459 Squadron, Gambut III Airfield, Libya
Died: Injuries from Aircraft Accident: (No. 459 Squadron Hudson aircraft FH227, 12 March 1943), Gambut III, 24 March 1943, Aged 25 Years
Buried: Heliopolis War Cemetery, Egypt
CWGC Additional Information:
Roll of Honour: Blackall QLD
Remembered: Panel 106, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Just before dawn, Hudson FH227 crashed at Gambut shortly after take-off in mist and rain, but with little wind. The cause of the accident is not known, but the aircraft came to rest upside down pointing in the direction of take-off. The crew members were:

Pilot Officer Percy Delahunty (400971) (Navigator) Seriously injured, Discharged from the RAAF: 30 January 1946
Flying Officer Richard William Litchfield (401239) (Wireless Air Gunner) Uninjured, Killed in Air Operations: 23 August 1944
Flying Officer Reginald Alexander McFarlane (401136) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Walter Harold Oakes (405082) (Wireless Air Gunner) Fatally injured, Died: 24 March 1943

References:

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 A9816, 145 (No. 459 Squadron Unit History)

Bibliography:

Kane-Maguire L. (Leon) Desert Scorpions: 459 Squadron RAAF 1942-1945, Australian Military History Publications Loftus NSW 2232, 2007
Vincent, D. (David) The RAAF Hudson Story Book 1, D. Vincent Highbury SA 5089, 1989