Pilot Officer Graham Natt SMITH

Service No: 416719
Born: Strathalbyn SA, 30 September 1922
Enlisted in the RAAF: 16 August 1941
Unit: No. 263 Squadron (RAF), RAF Station Warmwell, Dorset
Died: Aircraft Accident (No. 263 Squadron Typhoon aircraft MN129), Dorset, 12 March 1944, Aged 21 Years
Buried: Bath (Haycombe) Cemetery, Somerset
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Morrell Murray Smith and Jessie Smith, of Brookmor, South Australia
Roll of Honour: Waikerie SA
Remembered: Panel 130, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

At 1505 hours on 12th March 1944, Typhoon MN129 crashed about 1 km from the aerodrome at RAF Warmwell. The aircraft was on a non-operational flight, and had been detailed to practice low flying formation.

A Court of Inquiry into the accident reported: “The aircraft took off from Warmwell at 1450 hours and while waiting for his No 1 to be airborne, Pilot Officer Smith dived at a low altitude across the airfield towards his dispersal point and then pulled up sharply and attempted a roll to starboard. The Engine cut momentarily twice and then the Pilot appeared unable to recover from the manoeuvre, and the aircraft struck the ground at high speed.” The Engineer Officer at RAF Warmwell stated “The engine cuts were due to mishandling on the part of the pilot”. The Court concluded that “the accident was due to a breach of flying discipline by the Pilot.”


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, 166/38/452

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