LEST WE FORGET
Flying Officer David RUTTER
Service No: 833
Born: Melbourne VIC, 2 August 1915
Enlisted in the RAAF: 4 March 1940 (at Parafield SA)
Unit: No. 3 Squadron
Died: Air Operations: The Second Libyan Campaign (No. 3 Squadron Tomahawk aircraft AK378), Sidi Rezegh, Egypt, 9 December 1941, Aged 26 Years
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Hubert and Beulah Rutter, of Armadale, Victoria, Australia. B.M.Eng.(Melbourne).
Roll of Honour: Eltham VIC
Remembered: Column 245, Alamein Memorial, Egypt
Remembered: Panel 98, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide
Brother of Flight Lieutenant Donald Hemphill Rutter (401262). Their sister June, a civilian, was also killed during the War when she fell from a train at Collingwood, Victoria, on 19 December 1940.
On 9 December 1941, Tomahawk AK378 was one of 12 Tomahawks on an offensive patrol south of El Adem when 10 Me109Fs engaged the formation. One Tomahawk was shot down. Three enemy aircraft were destroyed, and another friendly aircraft was missing.
Captain R A Tempel* of the RA Base Depot later reported: “the Pilot appeared to stay in his plane, which was out of control, with a view to making a reasonable forced landing. At about 300 feet, he made a jump for it. Unfortunately the parachute failed to open and he fell about 100 yards from my vehicle. He was identified as Flying Officer Rutter, and he was buried on the spot where he fell”.
* This name is unable to be corroborated by DVA records and is likely to be that of a British Officer.
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, 163/55/147