Pilot Officer Stanley John RICKETTS DFC

Service No: 411383
Born: Rockdale NSW, 7 December 1916
Enlisted in the RAAF: 28 April 1941
Unit: No. 1662 Conversion Unit (RAF), RAF Station Blyton
Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), 15 June 1943
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 1662 Conversion Unit Lancaster aircraft ED378), Irish Sea, 14 August 1943, Aged 26 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Gilbert Stanley Ricketts and Stella Marguerite Ricketts, of Rockdale, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: Rockdale NSW
Remembered: Panel 191, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 129, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Soldiers Memorial Hall, Gerringong NSW

DFC Citation: Warrant Officer S J Ricketts of No. 460 Squadron RAAF Squadron has taken part in a large number of operational sorties, the majority of which have been against the enemy’s most heavily defended targets in Germany, Italy and Occupied France. He has obtained some excellent photographs. An outstanding bomb aimer, Warrant Officer Rickett’s cheerful confidence at the height of battle has been an inspiration to all with whom he has flown.

On 14 August 1943 Lancaster ED378 took off from Blyton on a non-operational cross country training flight. The proposed route was Blyton – Alston – Mull of Galloway – St David’s Head to position 53.40N 3.35W to Bury St Edmunds to Blyton. The aircraft last reported in at about 1615 hours in a position off the Mull of Galloway, but nothing was heard from the aircraft after that and it did not return to base. In 1949 it was recorded that the missing crew members had lost their lives at sea.

The crew members of ED378 were:

Sergeant David Emmanuel Griffiths (1296693) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Sergeant Kenneth Kendall (2207084) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant Ernest Middleton (1670757) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Pilot Officer Stanley John Ricketts DFC (411383) (Air Bomber) (Instructor)
Sergeant Dennis Smith (1435614) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber)
Flight Sergeant Peter Tomchyshyn (R/110876) (RCAF) (Navigator)
Wing Commander Anthony William Tarleton Trail DFC (37658) (RAF) (Pilot)
Sergeant William Kenneth Witham (656822) (RAF) (Wireless Operator/Air 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, 166/35/124
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line

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