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Charles Page 2004
|Pilot F/O Alexander Peter Potts, 402094 (KIA) Taree, NSW
Navigator F/Sgt, Geoffrey Leonard Wiblin, 419411 (KIA) Port Fairy, VIC
WAG F/O Frederick William Spencer Easton, 429420 (KIA) Rose Bay, NSW
WAG F/Sgt. James Sharpe Hamersley, 415140 (KIA) Hamersley, WA
Cameraman Cpl. Bernard Leo Duggan, 63239 71 Wing (KIA) Kensington, NSW
Crashed March 5, 1944
Built by the Department of Aircraft Production (DAP) at Fishermans Bend in Melbourne.
Delivered to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) as Beaufort Mark VIII serial number A9-480. Assigned to 100 Squadron. No known nickname or nose art.
On March 5, 1944 took off from Vivigani Airfield on Goodenough Island at night piloted by F/O Potts on a mission. Soon after take off, this Beaufort crashed two miles southeast of the airfield. The cause of the accident was listed as unknown, but the court of enquiry investigation considered that the pilot may have lost orientation after a night take off in haze. Pilot Potts was an experienced pilot with 1,655 hours of flying time.
The remains of the crew were recovered and initially buried at the American Cemetery on Goodenough. Later, interred in Bomana War Cemetery near Port Moresby. Potts at A3. E. 13. Wiblin at A3. E. 11. Easton at A3. E. 12. Hamersley at A3. E. 15. Duggan at A3. E. 14.
Charles Page visited the site in November 2004:
"The day after arrival, I hired a dinghy and motored two miles up the coast to a small inlet and creek. This led us into a mangrove swamp, and after squelching through thick glutinous mud for about two hundred meters, we found the aircraft wreckage. Most of it was submerged in the mud except for a propeller blade, part of a wing centre section, and several small shreds of debris. There were no identifying marks on any of the wreckage, and some strenuous digging would be required to find any. Nevertheless, the centre wing section appears to be from a Beaufort aircraft. If this is the case, it could be No.100 Squadron A9-480. The propeller blade condition suggests that the engine was not under power at impact."
ADF Serials - Beaufort A9-480
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October 27, 2021
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