Flight Sergeant Russell Leslie ROBERTSON

Service No: 413256
Born: West Maitland NSW, 11 March 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 16 August 1941
Unit: No. 466 Squadron, RAF Station Leconfield, Yorkshire
Died: Air Operations: (No. 466 Wellington aircraft HE386), off the French Coast, 16 May 1943, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Robert Leslie and Mary Frances Robertson, of West Maitland, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: West Maitland NSW
Remembered: Panel 193, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 110, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Wellington HE386 took off from RAF Leconfield at 2159 hours on the night of 16 May 1943 to carry out a mining mission in the Jellyfish area off Brest, France. Six aircraft from the Squadron took part in the mission and HE386 failed to return. At the time the aircraft were expected back monitoring stations picked up faint W/T signals. By 0120 hours an ASR was under way, the search eventually extending to an area 70 miles south of the Lizard. No trace of the missing aircraft or crew was found.

The crew members of HE386 were:

Sergeant George Edwin Harmes (1547702) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Roy Dempsey Carne (414642) (Navigator)
Flight Sergeant John William Lawson (8686) (Pilot)
Sergeant Desmond Charles Robertson (1270871) (RAFVR) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Russell Leslie Robertson (413256) (Bomb Aimer)

RAF Leconfield Operation Order No 70 of 16 May 1943 laid down:
Mines Load: All aircraft to carry 2 x F616/4. Dropping intervals 3 and 6 seconds alternate aircraft
Route: Base – Goole – Abingdon – Lyme Regis – Start point – 49.00N 0530W – 48.10N 0530W – Target – 48.10N 0530W – 49.00N 0530W – Lands End – St Eval. All Aircraft to land at St Eval.


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, 166/36/61

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