Sergeant David Alexander WILLIAMS

Service No: 403206
Born: Sydney NSW, 14 January 1921
Enlisted in the RAAF: 11 December 1940
Unit: No. 50 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station Skellingthorpe
Died: Air Operations: (No. 50 Squadron Lancaster aircraft L7516), Germany, 29 April 1942, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Kiel War Cemetery, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Vivian Vasey Woodthorpe Williams and Dorothy Maybury Williams, of Wahroonga, New South Wales, Australia
Roll of Honour: Wahroonga NSW
Remembered: Panel 132, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

At 2142 hours on the night of 29 April 1942 Lancaster L7516 took off from Skellingthorpe detailed to carry out gardening (mine-laying) in the Forget-Me-Not region. Nothing was heard from the aircraft after take-off and it failed to return to base. The aircraft was shot down by a night fighter and crashed on a sandbank off Rantum, Sylt. Two of the crew members were killed and the other five became Prisoners of War.

The crew members of L7516 were:

Pilot Officer Neil Hannah (113993) (RAFVR) (Navigator) PoW
Flight Sergeant Hector John McDonald (808088) (RAFVR) (First Wireless Operator) PoW
Sergeant Clarence Alfred Miners (406602) (Second Wireless Operator) PoW, Discharged from the RAAF: 22 February 1946
Flight Sergeant Stanley Edward Packard (1253463) (RAFVR) (Second Pilot) PoW
Sergeant Cecil John Scott (1379715) (RAFVR) (Rear Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Stanley Willett DFM (748743) (RAFVR) (Pilot) PoW
Sergeant David Alexander Williams (403206) (Front Gunner)

A later PoW Report stated “Attacked 29 April. Scotty in Rear Turret and Dave Front Turret. Both went out fighting gallantly. They were killed long before we eventually crashed. German Officers assured us they were given a proper funeral. Our deepest sympathy goes out to their parents.”


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 Veterans’ Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 163/178/523

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