Sergeant Robert Gordon TYLER

Service No: 408892
Born: Ballarat VIC, 11 September 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 20 June 1941
Unit: No. 18 Squadron
Died: Air Operations: (No. 18 Squadron Mitchell aircraft N5-144), Timor, 18 February 1943, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of James Gordon Tyler and Helen Ramsay Tyler, of North Ballarat, Victoria
Roll of Honour: Ballarat VIC
Remembered: Panel 10, Northern Territory Memorial, Adelaide River NT
Remembered: Panel 101, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

On 18 February 1943, six Mitchell aircraft were tasked to attack Dili, Timor. At 1045 hours the Mitchells were intercepted by five Zeke fighters and a running battle continued to 1115 hours when N5-144 made a forced landing about 200 kms south of Dili. It was assumed that Sergeant Tyler had been killed in the running battle.

The crew members of N5-144 were:

Vandrig C M Fisscher (NEIAF) (Second Pilot) Slightly Wounded
Second Lieutenant B J Grummels (NEIAF) (Pilot) Killed
Flight Sergeant Ronald Stuart Horridge (404990) (Wireless Air Gunner) Seriously Wounded, Discharged from the RAAF: 23 January 1946
Sergeant Robert Gordon Tyler (408892) (Wireless Air Gunner) Killed
Corporal van der Weert (93888) (Wireless Operator) Seriously Wounded

At 0100 hours on 19 February 1943, the three surviving crew members were picked up by an Australian destroyer and taken to Darwin.


Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A9845, 24


Hurst, D. (Doug) The Fourth Ally: The Dutch forces in Australia in WWII, Doug Hurst, Canberra, 2001

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