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  CA-9 Wirraway Serial Number A20-485  
4 Squadron

Former Assignment
1 AD

Pilot  F/O Albert Thomas Smith, 411613 (MIA / KIA) Armidale, NSW
Sgt Douglas Elgin Withers Bain, 21899 (WIA, survived) Glasgow, Scotland
MIA  December 11, 1942

Aircraft History
Built by Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC).

Wartime History
Delivered to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) as Wirraway A20-485. On January 1, 1942 assigned to 1 Air Depot (1 AD) and that same day assigned to 4 Squadron. No known nickname or nose art.

Mission History
On December 11, 1942 one of six Wirraways armed with two 250 lb bombs each that took off from Berry Drome (12 Mile) near Port Moresby on a bombing mission against Buna. Inbound to the target, over the Owen Stanley Range the formation split up. This aircraft was last seen entering clouds near the Kokoda Gap and was never seen again. When this aircraft failed to return, it was declared Missing In Action (MIA). Also lost was Wirraway A-20-51.

Both Smith and Bain were officially declared dead the day of the mission. Both are memorialized at Bomana War Cemetery on Panel 9.

ADF Serials - Wirraway A20-485
"Rec 1AD ex CAC 01/01/42. Rec 4Sqn RAAF 16/01/42. Accident 10/03/42 when aircraft's pilot applied brakes to miss obstacle, damaging airscrew tip. Repaired. Accident 01/05/42 when pilot made precautionary forced landing at Bugowannah NSW. Pilot P/O J R Mowbray and Sgt K W French Serv#9152 not injured. Card error in stating this aircraft thought destroyed per details of A20-481. No damage. In service 4Sqn RAAF. Rec 12RSU ex 4Sqn RAAF 05/11/42. Rec 4Sqn RAAF ex 12RSU 06/11/42. Missing on Ops with 5 other 4Sqn Wirraways 11/12/42 on bombing mission carrying two 250lb bombs each, to Buna. Following take-off from Berri Strip, the aircraft went missing going over the Owen Stanley Ranges with A20-51 after seeing entering cloud. Crew of A20-485 , P/O AT Smith Serv#411613 and Sgt Douglas Elgin Withers Bain Serv#21899 MIA Berry/Buna."
CWGC - Albert Thomas Smith
CWGC - Douglas Elgin Withers
WW2 Nominal Roll - Albert Thomas Smith
WW2 Nominal Roll - Douglas Elgin Withers Bain
RAAFDB - CAC-3 Wirraway A20-485

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Last Updated
August 21, 2019


Tech Info

2 Missing

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