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Liberator KL671 [Royal Air Force Aircraft Serial and Image Database] RAFCommands.com

 Liberator KL671



B.VIII; ex 44-49951; MCn 46-22; to India; arr 23.5.45; 159 Sqn; caught fire in the air 3.8.45; dived in attempt to extinguish flames but exploded; crashed at position 1920N 9510E; SOC 30.8.45. More information in: The Liberator in RAF and Commonwealth Service by James D. Oughton , John F. Hamlin, Andrew Thomas

Aircraft Accident / Loss Entry

Date of Crash  03 Aug 45 Aircraft Name  Liberator VIII Serial Number  KL671
Unit  159 Sqdn Operating Airfield   Country  
Aircrew details WO David Joseph Gallagher* (421505)
Details Aircraft caught fire 9.20N 95.10 E 8killed (MPoole) On detachment at Jessore, India. Took off at 0830 for Special Duties assignment. Believed to have reached the target, but unable to make the drop because of bad weather. At about 1430 was seen by the inhabitants of the village of Bigaing, south of Magwe, Burma, flying west through a heavy storm and completely enveloped in flames. It suddenly dived into the ground, crashing 100 yards east of the village on the west bank of the Irrawaddy River. The remains of only six of the eight crew were found at the scene. As these could not be individually identified all of the crew are commemorated on the Singapore Memorial. Skipper: 421505 W/O David Joseph Gallagher RNZAF. For reasons that are unknown, the remains were never recovered; all eight crewmen are missing, with no known graves. A photo of the forward starboard fuselage of KL671 is found in the photo collection of 159 Sqn air bomber Harry Fryer. It was a natural metal finish. There is no nose art, but no photo of the port fuselage was found in the Fryer collection. The caption to the Fryer photo noted that this Lib was the third Q-coded Lib named Queenie that he and his crew (P/O Gil Green, skipper) had flown in. It was also the aircraft they took on their last 159 Sqn op of 21 July 1945, to the Siam port of Singora.
Source Matt Poole

Casualities in the CWGC Register for Liberator VIII KL671

Rank Name, Number, Trade & Details DateUnit Country Cemetary/Memorial & Loc Ref
Flight SergeantStanley ALEXANDER (1895231) Liberator KL671 1945-08-03159 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Warrant OfficerDavid Joseph GALLAGHER (421505) Liberator KL671 1945-08-03159 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Flight SergeantEdward Francis HUGHES (2210463) Liberator KL671 1945-08-03159 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Flight SergeantJames JOBSON (1567017) Liberator KL671 1945-08-03159 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial
Flight SergeantVictor Gordon TAYLOR (1684358) Liberator KL671 1945-08-03159 Sqdn AIR27 SingaporeSingapore Memorial

Related Posts in RAF Commands Forum

ThreadPost TextAuthor
Meaning of "P.M.C." in 357 Sqn ORBHi, Dennis, I don't know enough about the AM949 crew burial site yet, but it may be an example of a missed opportunity to exhume known remains for reburial post-war in one of the Burma cemeteries established by the then-Imperial War Graves Commission. There could be more to the story, such as lawlessness which kept the Missing Research & Enquiry Service team, or another searcher team, from reaching this remote site very close to the China border. Or perhaps vegetation growth obscured the wartime gravesite and prevented the local villagers from pinpointing the site to MRES or other searchers. On the other hand, I have extensively researched several Liberator crashes where remains were known to have been buried, but then the RAF victims were left in the original graves for reasons that are just plain baffling, instead of being moved to a war cemetery like so many other casualties in the Far East. I wonder if the AM949 crew remains were essentially never recovered through neglect or poor decisionmaking or incompetence or whatever. Take the case of Liberator KH250 of RAF 355 Sqn, shot down over Port Blair, S. Andaman Island on 17 May 1945. The Japanese forced the local villagers to bury multiple remains (10 men are officially missing) near the crash site just outside of Port Blair, the target. When the British reoccupied the Port Blair area in Oct 1945, they were soon made aware of this crash site and the nearby Liberator wreckage (some of which was visible into the late 1980s, according to local villagers who were interviewed). What was done about it? Instead of exhuming this communal gravesite, someone ordered the erection of a brick and concrete grave marker, complete with a cross and a names plaque listing the missing crew of KH250. No bodies were exhumed, yet less than five miles away the grave of their crewmate -- executed three months after his bale out/capture -- was exhumed post-war and moved to Kirkee War Cemetery in India. Not exhuming the communal gravesite is baffling -- and the families of the missing were not told the truth. I'm now three years into the ongoing battle to get the communal grave exhumed. Liberator KH214 of 215 Sqn was shot down during a low-level attack on a Burma-Siam Railway bridge in western Burma on 3 Jan 1945, killing the crew of eleven. On 26 Sept 1945 the first Allied search team looking for Death Railway POW graves stopped in the village of Anankwin, Burma, along the railway. A Japanese officer who had been in command of the anti-aircraft gun crew which downed the Liberator took the searchers to the communal gravesite of the KH214 victims. A memorial service was held (led by Padre Henry Babb, a POW who had volunteered to participate in the search for graves), and a photo was taken of the grave and the service-in-progress. The Japanese officer had provided a date for the Liberator's downing -- 3 January -- and a description of the Liberator downing which matched up, without question, ....Read More.Matt Poole on 18th December 2012 07:49:39


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