Post by Dave Homewood on Sept 9, 2018 11:48:18 GMT 12
Great to see these shots. I had the pleasure of meeting Noel back in July when Russel Brodie, Ross Brodie and Bryan Cox and I went down to Timaru so Noel and Bryan could catch up. They'd been in the same No. 4 OTU course.
That last photo may be the Hudson transport (from utility Flight, Guadalcanal) which crashed on approach to land at Piva North (Bougainville) in April 1945. There was at least one death, a passenger from memory. As can be seen this aircraft was partially burned out. First time I have seen this image. Cannot recall its number offhand. Dave D
Post by errolmartyn on Sept 11, 2018 11:30:30 GMT 12
From my Vol Two:
Mon 23 Apr 1945 SOUTH PACIFIC Transport flight from Guadalcanal to Bougainville Utility Flight, RNZAF (Bomber I [Henderson Field], Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands) Hudson III NZ2012 - took off at 0700 and at about 20 feet on final approach to Piva North at 0924 in clear, calm weather, just after full flap was lowered, suddenly ‘zoomed’ to about 80 feet at an angle of between 45° and 75°. At the top of the zoom the Hudson’s port wing dipped steeply and the aircraft dived wing-down to crash on the runway edge, whence it fell onto its back, the rear fuselage breaking off behind the cabin door and the forward part of the cabin bursting into flames. The captain and navigator died in the crash, while one of the two passengers died of injuries later in the day. The three were buried in the Torokina Australian War Cemetery, but later reinterred at Bourail. Two others survived; wireless operator Wt Off P R Doody, with moderate injuries, and passenger carpenter LAC R C McAinch, who sustained only minor injuries on being thrown clear as the fuselage broke in two. On duty at the time was medical officer Flt Lt B M de Lambert. He hurriedly wrapped himself in a blanket and, with complete disregard for his own safety, walked into the flames where he found one of the injured men lying beside the wreckage encircled by fire. With the aid of an asbestos-suited fireman he transferred the injured man to a stretcher and carried him to safety. For his courageous and gallant action de Lambert was in 1946 awarded the George Medal. Captain: NZ413433 Flt Lt Robert Henderson LAMASON, RNZAF - Age 30. 1844hrs (575 on Hudson) Navigator: NZ4212752 Fg Off Wilfred Cleland HALL, RNZAF - Age 24. 762hrs. (Postal Clerk): NZ4215534 LAC John Arthur MEDHURST, RNZAF - Age 20. Lamason was on his third South Pacific tour. Hall was on his second tour and is known to have flown 68 ops during the first. His brother, Brian Eric Hall, died on 25 August 1943 while flying with 1 EFTS, RNZAF. Medhurst, who had left New Zealand only three days earlier, was beginning his second South Pacific tour, having been posted to Field Headquarters at Piva for postal duties. His previous tour was undertaken on Norfolk Island as a radio operator.
Author: Swift to the Sky – New Zealand’s Military Aviation History Author/publisher: For Your Tomorrow - A record of New Zealanders who have died while serving with the RNZAF and Allied Air Services since 1915 & A Passion For Flight - New Zealand aviation before the Great War. Publisher of Gp Capt C M Hanson’s By Such Deeds - Honours and Awards in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, 1923-1999