Flight Sergeant Dudley WHAM

Service No: 426407
Born: Mount Morgan QLD, 7 October 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 20 June 1942
Unit: No. 149 Squadron (RAF), RAF Methwold, Norfolk
Died: Air Operations: (No. 149 Squadron Lancaster aircraft HK645), Germany, 12 December 1944, Aged 23 years
Buried: Reichswald Forest War Cemetery, Kleve, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Frederick Henry and Anne Tab Wham; husband of Audrey Joyce Wham, of Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia.
Roll of Honour: Mount Morgan QLD
Remembered: Panel 132, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

Lancaster HK645 of 149 Squadron took off from RAF Methwold at 1140 hours on 12 December 1944 to bomb Witten, Germany. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take off and it did not return to base.

The crew members of HK645 were:

Flying Officer Edmund Henry Stephen Dorey (183947) (RAFVR) (Pilot)
Sergeant R Laird (1825466) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer) PoW
Flight Sergeant Neville Alfred L’Green (423018) (Wireless Operator Air)
Sergeant Leslie Albert Victor Hunt (189811) (RAFVR) (Air Gunner)
Sergeant William Lee Taylor (1623557) (RAFVR) (Air Gunner)
Pilot Officer John Rae Walter (427575) (Navigator Bomb Aimer) PoW, Discharged from the RAAF: 23 January 1946
Flight Sergeant Dudley Wham (426407) (Navigator Bomb Aimer)

Pilot Officer Walter stated “We were attacked by enemy fighters. The first burst started a fire in the starboard wing. The Pilot and Engineer were discussing the fire and the Captain stated he may have to abandon. All the crew acknowledged I tried to jettison the bombs but found the electrical circuit apparently affected as the bombs would not go. The next attack put the port wing on fire, and there was no answering fire from the Rear Gunner as the turret was unserviceable. I heard the Rear Gunner cry out but do not know what injuries he received. I was first to leave at 20,000 feet. I am certain the Captain, Engineer and Navigator were still in the aircraft but am not certain re the other three. It exploded as the Engineer followed me out. He was brought to the same POW Camp as I was in at Dortmund. He stated that he had been taken to the aircraft and saw the bodies of Wham and Hunt, and a German interrogator had stated that L’Green’s body had been found.


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, 166/43/1034

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