Flight Sergeant Percival James WHITTARD

Service No: 416238
Born: Port Pirie SA, 4 January 1916
Enlisted in the RAAF: 24 January 1941
Unit: No. 216 Group (RAF), No. 4 Ferry Control Unit
Died: Aircraft Accident (Wellington aircraft HE790), Iraq, 21 July 1943, Aged 27 Years
Buried: Habbaniya War Cemetery, Iraq
CWGC Additional Information: Son of Isaac Willie and Linda Ellen Whittard, of Solomontown, South Australia.
Roll of Honour: Adelaide SA
Remembered: Panel 132, Commemorative Area, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT
Remembered: World War II Honour Roll, National War Memorial of SA, North Terrace, Adelaide

On the 21st July 1943, Wellington HE790 took off form RAF Habbaniya, Iraq, en route to Karachi, Eye-witnesses said the take off appeared normal and the aircraft cleared the bund, going well at about 150 feet. The aircraft continued climbing and then it nosed down and crashed at 0325Z hours, one mile from the aerodrome. It was considered that the accident was caused by “loss of flying control by the Pilot, due to either fire in the aircraft or the Pilot’s incapacitation.” All the crew members were killed.

The crew members of HE790 were:

Flight Sergeant Harold Paul Clancy (413825) (Wireless Air Gunner)
Sergeant Kenneth Graig Earnshaw (1579031) (RAFVR) (Navigator)
Sergeant Frank Harrison (413863) (Pilot)
Sergeant Stanley Frank Hook (658749) (RAF) (Bomb Aimer)
Flight Sergeant Percival James Whittard (416238) (Air Gunner)


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, 166/43/267

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