SMITH Neil Joseph 415556

LEST WE FORGET

Flying Officer Neil Joseph SMITH

Service No: 415556
Born: Midland Junction WA, 27 June 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 9 November 1941
Unit: No. 44 Squadron (RAF), RAF Dunholme Lodge, Lincolnshire
Died: Air Operations (No. 44 Squadron Lancaster aircraft ND552), Belgium, 22 June 1944, Aged 22 Years
Buried: Lanklaar Community Cemetery, Dilsen-Stokkem, Limburg, Belgium
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Sidney Edward and Alice Ethel Smith, of Midland Junction, Western Australia.
Roll of Honour: Midland Junction
Remembered: Panel 130, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Cenotaph Undercroft, State War Memorial, Kings Park WA

Lancaster ND552 took off from RAF Dunholme Lodge at 2258 hours on the night of 21/22nd June 1944 to bomb Wesseling, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it failed to return to base. It was late established that the aircraft crashed into the grounds of a coal mine between the villages of Eisden (Limburg) and Lanklaar, Belgium. All seven crew members were killed.

The crew members of ND552 were:

Sergeant John Douglas Barber (1589518) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Sergeant David Blackie (2205827) (RAFVR) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant Laurence Herbert Bozier (1463968) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant Raymond William Brett (1807476) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Flying Officer Thomas Sawers Calder (142943) (RAFVR) (Navigator)
Flying Officer Neil Joseph Smith (415556) (Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Michael William Beevor Steele (1612783) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber)

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, 166/38/575