4 SQUADRON RAAF
IN AUSTRALIA DURING
DURING WORLD WAR 2

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visits since 18 May 2002

 

4 Squadron RAAF was formed at Richmond on 3 May 1937. The Squadron was initially equipped with Hawker demons and Avro Ansons. After only two years the squadron was renumbered and became 6 Squadron RAAF.

4 Squadron was reformed at Richmond on 17 June 1940. The Squadron was equipped with Hawker Demons, de Havilland Moth Minors. Some CAC Wirraways arrived at a later date. They were initially trained in dive bombing, ground attack and photo reconnaissance roles.

4 Squadron relocated to Canberra in November 1940.

The Squadron was relocated to Camden in May - July 1942 and then moved to Kingaroy in southern Queensland in September 1942. In November 1942, the Squadron relocated to Berry airfield at Port Moresby in New Guinea. A 4 Squadron Wirraway had the honour of being the only Wirraway to have ever shot down a Japanese aircraft. Pilot Officer J.S. Archer and Sgt. J.L. Coulston shot down a Japanese Zero on 26 December 1942.

4 Squadron received its first CAC Boomerangs in June 1943. The Squadron relocated to Fairbairn, Australia by January 1946.

John Moremon is writing the unit history of 4 Squadron and 5 Squadron RAAF during WW2.

Former 4 Squadron pilot, Peter Masters has written a book about his time in 4 Squadron RAAF. It contains good accounts of two crashes he had in Queensland. The first was in Wirraway A20-146 in December 1941, somewhere near Rockhampton; the second was in Kittyhawk A29-77, which he was ferrying back from Milne Bay (for 75 Sqn) in 1943. His book, Born Lucky, sells for $19.95 (132 pages). It is published by Seaview Press, PO Box 234, Henley Beach, SA, 5022 (seaview@seaviewpress.com.au). 

The Wirraway crash (A20-146) was in mid-December. It appears they got lost and ran out of fuel. They came in for a forced-landing but "as I did this, my dear old Pratt and Whitney Wasp engine spluttered and stopped, and I put the nose down. By a miracle of circumstance, we hit a five-wire fence with our wheels, then hit a horse with one wing and a cow with the other, before plunging into a creek bed on our belly." 

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank John Moremon for his assistance with this home page.

 

REFERENCE BOOKS

"Flying Squadrons of the Australian Defence Force"
by Steve Eather

 

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 Peter Dunn 2002
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This page first produced 18 May 2002

This page last updated 09 Jun 2002