Flight Sergeant Ernest Jack William SEMMENS

Service No: 419344
Born: Bendigo VIC, 17 April 1916
Enlisted in the RAAF: 18 July 1942
Unit: No. 311 Ferry Training Unit (RAF), RAF Station Moreton-in-Marsh
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 311 Ferry Training Wellington aircraft BK132), Shropshire, 18 December 1943, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Chester (Blacon) Cemetery, Cheshire
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Ernest Henry Fulton Semmens and Nora Eurimbla Semmens, of Bendigo, Victoria, Australia
Roll of Honour: Bendigo VIC
Remembered: Panel 130, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

At 1147 hours on the 18 December 1943, Wellington BK132 took from Moreton-in Marsh on a cross-country flight and fuel consumption test. The weather forecast was amended about one hour later and a diversion message was sent instructing the Pilot to land at High Erchall. At 1408 hours the aircraft was seen diving vertically into the ground at Atcham airfield, which is about five miles east of Shrewsbury, Shropshire. An eyewitness believes the aircraft came out of cloud in a dive. The reason for the accident is obscure. The Pilot was regarded as a very efficient Captain. All the crew members were killed.

The crew members of BK132 were:

Sergeant Kenneth Ronald Halliday (1335256) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant Edwin Roylance Phillips (1801951) (RAFVR)
Flight Sergeant Neil Colin Ross (410852) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Ernest Jack William Semmens (419344) (Navigator Bomb Aimer)
Sergeant David Hartnoll Wright (1622986) (RAFVR)


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, 166/27/276

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