Sergeant Farquharson PROCTOR

Service No: 8063
Born: Melbourne VIC, 8 April 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 17 January 1940
Unit: No. 464 Squadron
Died: Air Operations: (No. 464 Squadron Ventura aircraft AE945, Netherlands, 6 December 1942, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Eindhoven (Woensel) General Cemetery, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Farquharson and Wynifred Proctor, of Brighton East, Victoria, Australia
Roll of Honour: Brighton VIC
Remembered: Panel 109, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Ventura AE945 took off From RAF Feltwell at 1120 hours on 6 December 1942 to bomb the Phillips Radio valve factory at Eindhoven, Netherlands. Fourteen aircraft from the Squadron took part in the raid and three of these including AE945 failed to return. The mission was 464 Squadron’s first operational mission.

The crew members of AE945 were:

Flight Sergeant Beverley Morton Harvey (R/88469) (RCAF) (Pilot)
Sergeant John Butler Alexander MacPherson (1194240) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Warrant Officer Basil Marrows (903358) (RAFVR) (Observer)
Sergeant Farquharson Proctor (8063) (Air Gunner)

The mission was 464 Squadron’s first operational mission. The 464 Squadron aircraft formed up with aircraft from No. 487 Squadron (RNZAF) and No. 21 Squadron (RAF), a total of 47 aircraft mission of which nine failed to return. The formation was led by the Commanding Officer No. 464 Squadron Wing Commander Ronald Hillyard Young CBE DSO AFC MID (32214) (RAF).

The 464 Squadron Operations Record Book records the following “All Squadron aircraft took off on 6 December 1942 and formed with Nos. 487 and 21 Squadrons. The target was the Phillips Radio valve factory at Eindhoven. Low level was maintained by the formation and was uneventful until the Dutch coast was crossed when a good deal of light flak was experienced. This produced the first casualty when one machine was seen to dive into the sea but nobody knew who it was. The route taken was slightly south of track which led to the crossing of an enemy emergency landing ground which was well defended. The flak was extremely accurate and accounted for another aircraft piloted by Commanding Officer No. 487 Squadron, Wing Commander Francis Cecil Seavill (29216) (RAF). The aircraft was seen to blow up and crash in flames on the aerodrome. Sergeant Swan (RCAF) was also hit at this stage when 5 feet of the port main plane was shot away. He jettisoned the bombs which were seen to burst on a gun emplacement and made a safe return to base. Pilot Officer Sydney Charles Bertram Abbott DFC (400404) was also hit by a flak shell in the port engine but continued to the target, bombed and made it back to base. Heavy opposition was met over the target by flak guns mounted on the roof. Ventura AE702 (Flying Officer Maurice Gordon Moor (J/10139) (RCAF)) was shot down by the flak and was seen to dive into houses surrounding the target area. Course was set for home at low level. Heavy opposition by flak again met on crossing the Dutch coast. All machines and some members of crews suffered damage with birds, seagulls and ducks being brought back jammed in various positions with some penetrating the Perspex. Wing Commander Young who led the formation was awarded the DSO and Flight Lieutenant E F Hart (45488) (RAF) his Navigator the DFC.”

The Dutch Government conveyed their appreciation for the gallantry of the crews.

No. 464 Squadron lost Ventura AE702 (Sergeant Mervyn Lionel Vivian Hass (414026) (Air Gunner)) on 6 December 1942.

No. 464 Squadron lost Ventura AJ213 (Sergeant Stanley Charles Moss (408513) (Pilot)) on 6 December 1942.

No. 21 Squadron (RAF) lost Ventura AE940 (Flight Lieutenant Wallace Martin DFC (402450) (Navigator)) on 6 December 1942.


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 A9301, 8063


Lax, M. (Mark) and Leon Kane-Maguire The Gestapo Hunters: 464 Squadron RAAF 1942-5, Banner Books Maryborough QLD 4650, 1999

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