LEST WE FORGET

Flight Sergeant James Joseph HERBERT

Service No: 428007
Born: Launceston TAS, 22 August 1917
Enlisted in the RAAF: 14 August 1942
Unit: No. 27 Operational Training Unit (RAF), RAF Lichfield, Staffordshire
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 27 Operational Training Unit Wellington aircraft X3637), Essex, 6 November 1943, Aged 26 Years
Buried: Brookwood Military Cemetery, Surrey
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Ernest James Herbert and Harriet Herbert, of Launceston, Tasmania, Australia; husband of Gwendoline Lila Herbert, of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Roll of Honour: Launceston TAS
Remembered: Panel 123, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

On the 6th November 1943, Wellington X3637 took off from RAF Lichfield at 1940 hours, detailed to carry out an evening navigation detail. At approximately 2000 hours, while flying just below the base of a cumulonimbus cloud, the aircraft hit Stirling R 9192 of No. 1652 Heavy Conversion Unit. Out of control the Wellington crashed at Raden Stock Farm, Little Walden some two miles from Saffron Walden, Essex. All the crew on X3637 were killed, while the Stirling aircraft although damaged managed to return to its base.

The crew members of X3637 were:

Sergeant Noel Charles Hanson (429318) (Air Gunner Under Instruction)
Flight Sergeant James Joseph Herbert (428007) (Wireless Air Gunner Under Instruction)
Pilot Officer Trevor Tudor Jones (406621) (Screened Wireless Air Gunner)
Flight Sergeant Sylvester Stuart Lyndhurst La Frentz (426353) (Air Bomber Under Instruction)
Flying Officer Douglas Alexander McKechnie (400328) (Screened Pilot)
Pilot Officer Malcolm Eric McKiggan (407530) (Screened Pilot)
Flight Sergeant Frederick Gordon Neville (420842) (Pilot Under Instruction)
Flying Officer Oswald Ian Hamilton Stoeckel (417529) (Navigator Under Instruction)

No. 27 Operational Training Unit lost Wellington LN 295 (Sergeant Alexander Henry Anderson (427788) (Air Gunner)) on 6 November 1943.

References:

Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour On-Line Records (RAAF Casualty Information compiled by Alan Storr (409804))
Department of Veteran’s Affairs On-Line WWII Nominal Roll
Commonwealth War Graves Commission On-Line Records
National Archives of Australia On-Line Record A705, 166/17/364

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