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No. 7 Squadron
No. 1 Squadron
|Pilot W/Cdr Nigel William Barker, RAAF 260411 (MIA / KIA, BR) Double Bay, NSW
Navigator F/O Allan Dalglish, RAAF 439416 (MIA / KIA, BR) Leeton, NSW
W/AG F/O Colin Laidler Chisholm, RAAF 431737 (MIA / KIA, BR) Bendigo, VIC
W/AG F/O Alfred Vincent Eric Bate, RAAF 431161 (MIA / KIA, BR) East Brighton, VIC
Passenger F/Sgt William Henry Pratt, RAAF 434897 (MIA / KIA, BR) Preston, VIC
Passenger F/Sgt Trevor Neil Hay, RAAF 56177 (MIA / KIA, BR) Wagga Wagga, VIC
Passenger Sgt Reginald Thomas Barter, RAAF 60200 (MIA / KIA, BR) Parramatta, NSW
Passenger Lt Col Austin George Fentin, MBE, AIF NX484 (MIA / KIA, BR) Beecroft NSW
Crashed January 28, 1945
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 A9-660.
Assigned to No. 1 Squadron. Later, assigned to No. 7 Squadron. No known nickname or nose art.
Afterwards, searches found no trace of either missing aircraft.
During the early 1960s, the wreckage of this aircraft was located on a mountain ridge northeast of Myola. The remains of the crew were recovered from the crash site.
The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the crash. After the recovery of remains, the entire crew was buried on August 1, 1961 at Bomana War Cemetery. Barker, Barter, Bate, Fentin, Pratt, Hay and Chisholm in collective grave C8. A. 19-26. Dalglish is buried at C8. A. 23.
NAA RAAF Unit History sheets (Form A50) Number 7 Squadron Jun 40 - Dec 45 (NAA: A9186, 271)
(Page 458) "Tadj Feb 1 1945 Beaufort A9-660 reported missing enroute Moresby-Lae via Kokoda Gap. One of the passengers FSgt Pratt, W. H. Wireless Operator (air) was returning form short operational leave, and arrived at Townsville for onward travel to Tadji. Whilst at Townsville he learned that a crew recently posted to the squadron was in Townsville on their way through to Port Moresby with an aircraft, which had to be ferried there. Wishing to rejoin his crew without too much delay, he traveled with this aircraft to Moresby. There the new squadron crew (consisting of W/Cdr N. W. Baker, Captain, F/O A. Dalglish Navigator, and F/O C. L. Chishlm and A. V. Bate, Gunnery officers), with which he was traveling, delivered the first aircraft and picked up the second aircraft (A9-660) for delivery to this [No. 7] squadron. On leaving Moresby for Tadji via Lae they had a fighter aircraft [P-40N A29-649] in company with them which they had agreed to escort to its destination. Nothing was heard of either aircraft from the time they left Moresby on 28 January. When it was known they had not arrived at Lae signals were sent to all aerodromes in that part of New Guinea asking for information of the aircraft. All these replied that nothing had been heard of them. A search was then organized and aircraft searched thoroughly the route which they had intended to take and a large additional area over which they may have flown. During all searches no trace could be found of either aircraft. Casualty signal is attached as Appendix A."
ADF Serials - Beaufort A9-660
CWGC - Nigel William Barker
CWGC - Allan Dalglish
CWGC - Colin Laidler Chisholm
CWGC - Alfred Vincent Eric Bate
CWGC - William Henry Pratt
CWGC - Trevor Neil Hay
CWGC - Reginald Thomas Barter
CWGC - Austin George Fentin
Thanks to Daniel Leahy for additional information
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May 5, 2021
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