ROBERTS Kimberley 415358

LEST WE FORGET

Flight Lieutenant Kimberley ROBERTS DFC

Service No: 415358
Born: Bunbury, 11 November 1922
Enlisted in the RAAF: 14 September 1941
Unit: No. 619 Squadron (RAF), RAF Dunholme Lodge, Lincolnshire
Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC), 11 April 1944 (Citation Title: No. 619 Squadron RAF)
Died: Air Operations (No. 619 Squadron Lancaster aircraft LL83), France, 7 June 1944, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Frederick William and Ethel Marion Roberts, of Bunbury, Western Australia.
Roll of Honour: Bunbury WA
Remembered: Panel 256, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 129, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

DFC Citation: Pilot Officer Roberts of 619 Squadron was pilot of an aircraft detailed to attack Stuttgart one night in March 1944. While over the target area, the rear gunner Flight Sergeant King (RAAF), reported an enemy aircraft closing in to attack. Pilot Officer Roberts took the necessary evading action but the bomber was hit by the enemy’s bullets and sustained damage. Even so he
cleverly manoeuvred to a position from which the rear gunner was able to engage the enemy. Following a well burst of fire from his guns, the enemy aircraft was seen to dive towards the ground, out of control and with its engines on fire. Pilot Officer Roberts then completed his bombing run and afterwards flew the damaged aircraft to base. This officer displayed commendable skill, courage and devotion to duty. The rear gunner at the time was also awarded a DFM.

Lancaster LL783 took off from RAF Station Dunholme Lodge at 0055 hours on 7 June 1944 to attack Caen, France, and failed to return to base. Following post war enquiries and investigations, it was learned that LL783 had been shot down in the target area and five crew members had been killed and two became Prisoners of War.

The crew members of LL783 were:

Sergeant W H Deviell (1384588) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber) PoW
Sergeant J F J Forrest (1583098) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer) PoW
Pilot Officer John Ernest Lott (178572) (RAF) (Navigator)
Flight Lieutenant Kimberley Roberts DFC (415358) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant John Henry Tucker (1321777) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Leslie Edward Williams (1627306) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Flying Officer Guy Herbert Wyand (146076) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)

References:

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, 166/36/200