CRASH OF A LOCKHEED HUDSON
1 MILE SE SOUTHERN END HUGHES AIRFIELD, NT
ON 12 JUNE 9143
Lockheed Hudson A16-186 of 2 Squadron RAAF, took off from Hughes Airfield in the Northern Territory at 112357/Z hours on 12 June 1943 on a Test Flight. At 120022/Z hours the aircraft was seen approaching from the northern end of the airfield to make a landing. When the aircraft was directly over the end of the strip it was at approximately 500 feet, with the flaps and wheels down. The port motor was not running and the airscrew was feathered. When the aircraft was half-way down the strip the wheels were pulled up and the pilot appeared to put on more power to the starboard motor. The aircraft then turned to port and began to lose height slowly.
At this stage the aircraft disappeared from sight and a few seconds later, a crash, followed by a loud explosion was heard. When the scene was reached approximately 1 mile south east of the southern end of Hughes Airfield, the remains of the aircraft was burning fiercely. Seven bodies were located. Six of them were able to be identified. The seventh body was unable to be identified at that initial time.
The following seven crew members were all tragically killed:-
F/Lt John Frederick Mason (252763) (pilot)
Sgt. George Ridgway Rowland (409745)
F/Sgt Raymond James Flaherty (416180)
F/O Thomas Wallace Swan (411403)
F/Sgt Robert Donald Woods (404747)
F/Lt John Richard Wood (280849)
F/O Louis George Knauer (405180)
All of the above personnel were interred at Adelaide River War Cemetery at approximately 1900 hours on 12 June 1943.
NOTE:- Another official document states the crash was one mile north east (not south east) of the southern end of Hughes Airfield.
I'd like to thank Jennifer O'Donoghue-Hills from Wellington, NZ for her assistance with this web page. Her uncle Raymond Flaherty was killed in this crash.
Can anyone help me with more information on this crash?
© Peter Dunn 2015
This page first produced 23 May 2015
This page last updated 24 May 2015