Flight Sergeant William John TUCKER

Service No: 416633
Born: Adelaide SA, 7 February 1917
Enlisted in the RAAF: 21 July 1941
Unit: No. 12 Squadron (RAF), RAF Wickenby, Lincolnshire
Died: Air Operations (No. 12 Squadron Lancaster aircraft W4992), Germany, 15 June 1943, Aged 26 Years
Buried: Rheinberg War Cemetery, Kamp Lintfort, Nordrhein-Westfal, Germany
CWGC Additional Information: Son of William Charles Alexander and Ethel Tucker, of Toorak Gardens. South Australia.
Roll of Honour: Adelaide SA
Remembered: Panel 131, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

Lancaster W4992 took off from RAF Wickenby at 2313 hours on the night of 14/15th June 1943 to bomb Oberhausen, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it failed to return to base. It was later established that the aircraft was hit by anti-aircraft fire on its run in towards the target and it exploded and crashed near Monchengladbach, Germany. Six of the crew members were killed and one became a Prisoner of War.

The crew members of W4992 were:

Sergeant Thomas Carter (1300587) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Sergeant Brinkley Oliver Davies 91313708) (RAFVR) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant Reginald Fletcher (1088071) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Flight Sergeant Frank Gordon McKay (39570) (RNZAF) (Mid Upper Gunner)
Sergeant John Johnston Simpson (1045724) (RAFVR) (Bomb Aimer)
Pilot Officer K Truelove (131896) (RAF) (Navigator) PoW
Flight Sergeant William John Tucker (416633) (Pilot)

Pilot Officer Truelove later stated “The aircraft received a direct hit by flak approaching the target. It went into a dive and the Pilot ordered bale out. Almost immediately the plane blew up. I had just grasped my chute so that when I was blown clear I was able to adjust it and land safely. It is very unlikely that the rest of the crew were as lucky as I was. I believe they were killed.”


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, 166/40/46

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