LEST WE FORGET

Flying Officer William Sowden DE GARIS

Service No: 437120
Born: Millicent SA, 1 July 1924
Enlisted in the RAAF: 7 November 1942
Unit: No. 207 Squadron (RAF), RAF Spilsby, Lincolnshire
Died: Air Operations (No. 207 Squadron Lancaster aircraft NG230), North West Europe, 5 March 1945, Aged 20 Years
Buried: Unrecovered
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Ralph Edwin and Beatrice Mary De Garis, of Millicent, South Australia
Roll of Honour: Millicent SA
Remembered: Panel 283, Runnymede Memorial, Surrey UK
Remembered: Panel 121, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

Lancaster NG230 of 207 Squadron took off from RAF Station Spilsby at 1716 hours on 5 March 1945 for a bombing raid on Bohlen, Germany. It carried 1 x 1000 lb (pound) (450 kg) and 12 x 500 lb (225 kg) bombs. The aircraft did not return to base. A 1950 report by the Missing Research & Enquiry Service advised that after prolonged search and investigation no information relating to the aircraft loss or the fate of its crew was found.

The crew members of NG230 were:

Sergeant Andrew Sweeting Burt (3040594) (RAFVR) (Flight Engineer)
Flying Officer William Sowden De Garis (437120) (Pilot)
Sergeant William Drysdale (1826957) (RAFVR) (Air Gunner)
Sergeant William Henry Edge (2222026) (RAFVR) (Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Stanley Frederick Giles (1322210) (RAFVR) (Air Bomber)
Flying Officer Gordon Morris (154529) (RAFVR) (Navigator)
Warrant Officer Albert Ernest Wood (426850) (Wireless Operator/Air Gunner)

References:

Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records (RAAF Casualty Information compiled by Alan Storr (409804))
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/9/558

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