Flying Officer John Michael PALMER

Service No: 422257
Born: Brisbane QLD, 3 March 1923
Enlisted in the RAAF: 25 April 1942 (at Sydney NSW)
Unit: No. 61 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station Coningsby
Died: Air Operations: (No. 61 Squadron Lancaster aircraft DV397), Germany, 24 March 1944, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Berlin 1939-1945 War Cemetery, Germany
CWGC Additional Information: Son of John Ambrose and Una Leda Palmer, of Neutral Bay, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: Sydney NSW
Remembered: Panel 128, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

At 1827 hours on the night of 24 March 1944 Lancaster DV397 took off from Coningsby detailed to bomb Berlin. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take-off and it failed to return to base. An Missing Research and Enquiry Team report stated “the aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire and exploded in the air. It crashed near the village of Gehrden, which is approximately 16 miles south east of Magdeburg, Germany.” Six of the crew members had been killed and one was taken prisoner..

The crew members of DV397 were:

Pilot Officer Denis Carbutt (54303) (RAF) (Pilot)
Sergeant Robert Nixon Cunningham (2209399) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Sergeant A A Fulker (1444449) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber) PoW
Sergeant Joseph McCrevey (1497501) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Flying Officer John Michael Palmer (422257) (Navigator)
Sergeant Alan Walton Sherwood (1088330) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air)
Sergeant Harold Edgar Short (1806043) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)


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, 166/32/331

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