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  Lockheed Hudson Mark I Serial Number A16-47 Code SU-R
Survey Flight

Former Assignments
2 AD
No. 6 Squadron
No. 23 Squadron
No. 24 Squadron
5 AD
7 AD
1 AD

Click For Enlargement
RAAF July 29, 1941

Click For Enlargement
RAAF July 29, 1941
Pilot  F/Lt Lancelot Edward Hilmer Clarke, 416567 (MIA / KIA) Melrose, SA
Crew  F/O Thomas John Steel, 428807 (MIA / KIA) Dundas, NSW
Crew  Cpl William McPherson Gaze, 38868 (MIA / KIA) Boonah, QLD
Passenger  Squadron Leader Nigel Minter Pilcher, 260750 C. O. Survey Flight (MIA / KIA) Merewether, NSW
Passenger  Sqn Ldr Cuthbert Griffen, 262191 C.O. 14 OBU (MIA / KIA) Bonshaw, NSW
Passenger  LAC Frank George Chiverton, 22955 (MIA / KIA) Townsville, QLD
Passenger  LAC Walter Kenrick Nielsen, 151744 (MIA / KIA) Sarina, QLD
Crashed  July 23, 1945

Aircraft History
Built by Lockheed as Hudson Mark I. Constructors Number 1898. Disassembled and loaded as cargo and shipped across the Pacific to Australia.

Wartime History
On March 4, 1940 assigned to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) as Hudson A16-47 and reassembled by 2 Air Depot (2 AD). On May 6, 1940 assigned to 6 Squadron. On June 29, 1940 assigned to 23 Squadron.

On December 6, 1941 assigned to No. 24 Squadron at Garbutt Field.

On January 7, 1942 took off on a mission against Rabaul and was heavily damaged by enemy fire. Afterwards, temporarily repaired then flown back to Garbutt Field at Townsville. On April 20, 1942 assigned to 5 Air Depot (5 AD) for major repairs that took eleven months to complete. On March 3, 1943 assigned to 1 Operational Training Unit (1 OTU).

On July 23, 1943 took off piloted by F/O J D Osborne, 400286 with Sgt C. D. Brockhurst, 425593, passenger F/O W. E. Savidge, 51233 and WAG Sgt C. H. Kealy, 416683. While landing, the brakes seized causing the Hudson to tip onto the nose. None of the crew were injured.

On August 10, 1943 assigned to 7 Air Depot (7 AD). Next on April 19, 1944 returned to 1 Operational Training Unit (1 OTU). On April 29, 1944 assigned to 1 Air Depot (1 AD). On May 26, 1944 assigned to Survey Flight then on June 10, 1945 to 2 Air Depot (2 AD) before returning to Survey Flight on June 28, 1945. Coded SU-R.

Mission History
On July 23, 1945 at 8:41am took off from Lowood Airfield piloted by F/Lt Lancelot Edward Hilmer Clarke on an inspection flight bound for Bowen Airfield. Aboard were four passengers Squadron Leader Pilcher, Squadron Leader Griffen, LAC Chiverton and LAC Nielsen. Last heard at Rockhampton. When this Hudson failed to arrive it was officially declared Missing In Action (MIA). This Hudson was believed to have crashed into Shoalwater Bay near Akens Island.

The entire crew was officially declared dead the day of the mission. Pilcher on July 23, 1945. All are memorialized at Sydney War Cemetery at the Sydney Memorial. Clarke, Steel, Pilcher, Griffen on panel 5. Gaze, Chiverton and Nielsen on panel 7.

CWGC - Lancelot Edward Hilmer Clarke
CWGC - Thomas John Steel
CWGC - William McPherson Gaze
CWGC - Nigel Minter Pilcher
CWGC - Cuthbert Griffen
CWGC - Frank George Chiverton
CWGC - Walter Kenrick Nielsen
ADF Serials - Hudson A16-47
ADF Serials - Hudson A16-47 Photo Gallery
Oz@War "Crash of a Lockheed Hudson possibly in Shoalwater Bay near Akens Island, QLD on 23 July 1945"

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Last Updated
July 21, 2020

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7 Missing

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