Flight Sergeant Frederick Herbert RATHJEN

Service No: 416283
Born: Murray Bridge SA, 13 April 1919
Enlisted in the RAAF: 28 April 1941
Unit: No. 15 Operational Training Unit (RAF), RAF Harwell, Oxfordshire
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 15 Operational Training Unit Wellington aircraft DV595), Berkshire, 25 August 1942, Aged 23 Years
Buried: Harwell Cemetery, Berkshire
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Friedrich Wilhelm and Olga Bertha Rathjen, of Renmark, South Australia
Roll of Honour: Loxton SA
Remembered: Panel 129, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

On 25th August 1942, Wellington DV595 took off from RAF Harwell at 0001 hours detailed to carry out night bombing practice over the Oldstone bombing ranges. While over the range, DV 595 collided with Wellington N 2755 and crashed 3 kms south east of Uffington and 10 kms west north west of Wantage, Berkshire. All the crew members on DV595 were killed. An Inquiry into the accident stated “DV 595 broke cloud at 0100 hours in order to see the range and collided with the underneath side of Wellington N2755. The eight on board N2755 were uninjured.”

The crew members of DV595 were:

Sergeant Francis Thomas George Cannon (1376754) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant Robert John Coombs (933684) (RAFVR) (Air Gunner)
Pilot Officer Nicholas Falkinder (1223800 (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Sergeant Dennis Greet (1497562) (RAF) (Second Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Frederick Herbert Rathjen (416283) (Air Gunner)
Pilot Officer Arthur Stanley Walmsley (120645) (RAFVR) (Observer)


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 Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 163/155/108

Book Now Book Now