CRASH OF A B-25 MITCHELL
INTO THE SEA NEAR PERON ISLAND, NT
ON 2 SEPTEMBER 1944

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B-25D Mitchell, A47-6 (ex #43-3247) of 2 Squadron RAAF, crashed into the sea near Peron Island on 2 September 1944 whilst on a Search and Rescue mission searching for 2 Squadron Mitchell A47-12 that had crashed on the beach on Perron Island. H. Easton and G. King were extra passengers in A47-6 who felt that another set of eyes would assist in the search.

The reason for the crash was that the pilot had turned on his search light at low level over the sea, become disoriented and crashed into the sea. The aircraft broke in half on impact and the two passengers were killed. They were not strapped in. Their bodies were never recovered. The aircraft was piloted by F/O Tige Carter.

2 passengers killed were as follows:-

    Flight Lieutenant Hilford Charles Easton (a Chaplain)
    Gordon Sydney James King (an armourer)

No further info on any other crew members (but unlikely that more than 2 on board, but not confirmed).

A47-6 (NA c/n 100-20753) was received by 2 Squadron on 22 April 1944.

Dr Geoff Briggs was second Pilot to Flight Sergent Hocking who joined the search. 

The following information is from the Commonwealth War Graves site:-

Name: EASTON, THE REV. HILFORD CHARLES
Initials: H C
Nationality: Australian
Rank: Chaplain
Regiment: Royal Australian Air Force
Age: 30
Date of Death: 02/09/1944
Service No: 423197
Additional information: Son of George Frederick and Charlotte Lillian Easton; husband of Mavis Selma Easton, of Henty, New South Wales.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: D.B.11.
Cemetery: ADELAIDE RIVER WAR CEMETERY        

 

Name: KING, GORDON SYDNEY JAMES
Initials: G S J
Nationality: Australian
Rank: Warrant Officer
Regiment: Royal Australian Air Force
Age: 34
Date of Death: 02/09/1944
Service No: 4795
Additional information: Son of John Ernest and Florence King; husband of Doreen May King, of Plympton, South Australia.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead
Grave/Memorial Reference: Panel 8.
Cemetery: NORTHERN TERRITORY MEMORIAL        

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank Craig Busby for his assistance with this home page. I'd also like to thank Dr. Geoff Briggs for his assistance with this home page. 

 

Can anyone help me with more information on this crash?

 

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 Peter Dunn 2015

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This page first produced 19 December 2000

This page last updated 11 January 2017