PHILIPSON Keith Rutherford 429669

LEST WE FORGET

Flight Sergeant Keith Rutherford PHILIPSON

Service No: 429669
Born: Leeton NSW, 28 August 1922
Enlisted in the RAAF: 16 October 1942 (at Perth WA)
Unit: No. 2 Squadron, Hughes NT
Died: Air Operations (No. 2 Squadron Mitchell aircraft A47-3), Timor, 22 September 1944, Aged 22 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Harry Rutherford Philipson and Effie R. M. Philipson, of Leeton, New South Wales.
Roll of Honour: Unknown
Remembered: Panel 9, Northern Territory Memorial, Adelaide River NT
Remembered: Panel 98, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

The Mitchells and Beaufighters of No. 79 Wing carried out shipping sweeps, and bombing and harassing attacks on enemy centres including Maumere, Tual, Langgur, Larat and Dobo. Although enemy activity was at a low ebb during September, the month was an unfortunate one for the wing, which lost nine aircraft. Of 42 crew members in these lost aircraft only 16 survived .

Extract from Odgers, G.J. (George James) (VX127783) Air War Against Japan 1943-1945, Australian War Memorial, Canberra, 1957 – Page 247

On 22 September, four Mitchells were dispatched on a shipping sweep along the north coast of Timor. During a strafing attack on a barge in the harbour at Manatuto, which was narrow with steep banks on both sides, Flying Officer Allen Slater’s aircraft (A47-3) crashed into the sea from 500 feet, about 400 metres from shore. All on board were killed. It was thought the enemy machine-gun emplacements were responsible, but A47-3 had been fouled by wires stretching between the headlands.

Extract from Bennett, J. (John William) Highest Traditions: the history of No. 2 Squadron RAAF, Australian Government Publishing Service, 1995 – Page 219

The crew members of A47-3 were:

Flying Officer John Francis Daggett (434341) (Air Gunner)
Sergeant Desmond Frederick Harberger (435448) (Air Gunner)
Flying Officer Murray Scott Millett (426641) (Navigator Bomb Aimer)
Flight Sergeant Keith Rutherford Philipson (429669) (Second Pilot)
Flying Officer Allen Wallace Slater (414849) (Pilot)
Flying Officer Bernard Alwin Wisniewski (423966) (Gunnery Leader)

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 A9845, 1

Bibliography:

Wilson, S. (Stewart) Boston, Mitchell and Liberator in Australian Service, Aerospace Publications Weston Creek ACT 2611, 1992