Pilot Officer William Murray WENDON

Service No: 403389
Born: Brighton, England, 22 December 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 6 January 1941 (at Sydney NSW)
Unit: No. 156 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station Warboys, Cambridgeshire
Died: Air Operations: (No. 156 Squadron Lancaster aircraft ED837), Germany, 13 May 1943, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Kleve, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
CWGC Additional Information: Son of William Howard and Sara Beatrice Wendon, of Bronte, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: Hurstville NSW
Remembered: Panel 132, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: Hurstville War Memorial, Hurstville NSW

Lancaster ED837 took off from RAF Warboys at 0021 hours on the night of 12/13th May 1943, detailed to bomb Duisberg, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it failed to return to base. Six of the crew members were killed and one became a Prisoner of War.

The crew member of ED837:

Sergeant Clarence Askam (936478) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Flight Sergeant Alexander Clive Johnston (404684) (Rear Gunner)
Flying Officer Evan Seaforth MacKenzie (403146) (Navigator)
Flight Sergeant Neville Ray Mason (404987) (Air Bomber)
Pilot Officer William Murray Wendon (403389) (Pilot)
Sergeant Gordon Alexander Williams (411082) (Wireless Operator Air Gunner) PoW, Discharged from the RAAF: 12 November 1945
Flight Sergeant Ronald Gordon Wynn (408605) (Mid Upper Gunner)

In a report by the then Warrant Officer Williams he reported: “A collision was the cause of damage to the aircraft. From the time of the collision, I heard nothing from any other member of the crew, but apparently no other member was able to bale out. I baled out at 500 feet. The aircraft was not in control but there was no fire. The aircraft crashed on the outskirts of Duisberg. I was arrested by the German police after five days of walking.”

From the available records given in Chorley, it is not possible to identify the other aircraft in the collision as an allied aircraft.

Pilot Officer Wendon, and Sergeants Askam, Johnston, Williams and Wynn survived the loss of No. 460 Squadron Lancaster aircraft W4816 (Sergeant Dudley Anstruther Corfe (411124) (Bomb Aimer)) on 18 January 1943.


Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records (RAAF Casualty Information compiled by Alan Storr (409804))
Chorley, W .R. Royal Air Force Bomber Command Losses of the Second World War – Volume 4 Aircraft and Aircrew Losses 1943, Midland Counties Publications, 1996
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/43/190
Register of War Memorials in New South Wales On-Line

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