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Thread: Motor Boat Crew, RAAF

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    Default Motor Boat Crew, RAAF

    I have just had the service record of the Danish Corporal Hans Max Bruno Thomsen (82287) digitized, cf.
    http://naa12.naa.gov.au/scripts/SearchOld.asp?O=I&Number=4937253

    At enlistment he is remustered as Motor Boat Crew and trained at No. 8 Motor Boat Crew Course at Marine School, RAAF Rathmines, New South Wales from 12.1942 to 12.01.1943. I am not certain of the role/function of the Mortor Boat Crew. Could anyone help?

    In his first letter, 8.1.1942, to the RAAF (cf. p. 82 of the service record), he refers to the fact that the Australian Allied forces "now" accepts "friendly Allies" (he is still of Danish nationality). Would anybody know, when the Australian forces begin to accept non-subjects? That is, of course, if the information of Thomsen in the letter is true.

    Finally, in the same letter he mentions a wish to join the "Mosquito fleet, RAAF" - I am not sure of the meaning as I have only found US Navy references to this notion. Could anyone help?

    Thanks in advance.

    Mikkel Plannthin
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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    Either crew for Air Sea Rescue launches or tenders for Flying Boats, servicing the aircraft, moorings and flarepaths. Pete

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    Mikkel,

    Take a look at this site:

    http://members.iinet.net.au/~lesjubbs/

    R.A.A.F. Marine Section:The Forgotten Era of Men and Vessels.

    Best of all - It's free!

    Enjoy,

    Col
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 15th January 2010 at 11:34.

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    Thanks you

    Another look at the service record shows that he is posted to No. 1 Flying Boat Repair Base, RAAF Lake Boga, i.e. book D p 153f. So excellent tip.

    Mikkel
    Last edited by Mikkel Plannthin; 15th January 2010 at 12:33. Reason: typo
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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    Mikkel,

    You can view the ORB for No.1 & 2 Flying Boat Repair Depot, at the National Archives of Australia.

    NAA: A9186 405 (305 pp)

    Col.

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    Thanks to the help received I have know updated the profile, cf.
    http://www.danishww2pilots.dk/profiles.php?alpha=t&id=189

    He suffers an accident on 13 October 1943 when attached to No. 52 Operational Base Unit. Where was this unit located, and any idea of how to get to know more of the kind of accident.

    Regards

    Mikkel
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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    Hi Mikkel,

    You will notice on p.8 of 82 of AUS82287 Hans Max Bruno THOMSEN's A9301 (NAA: A9301 82287), there is mention of an incident, on 13-10-1943, in which THOMSEN was injured from a blow by a winch handle.

    The 52 OBU (Operational Base Unit) ORB is digitised (NAA: A9186 561 32pp.). If you go to p.11 of 32, and check under the entries 13/14 October, 1943, you will find that a member of the crew of G.P.Launch (16-08) 'SAPPHIRE', was injured. Although unnamed, this is undoubtedly, THOMSEN.

    Inexplicably, there is no A705 Casualty File for THOMSEN, at the NAA.

    In relation to THOMSEN's Australian naturalisation, his file, which is undigitised, can be found here: NAA: A435 1944/4/5481. You may wish to have it digitised. To give you some idea of the contents of one of these files, here are a couple of examples which are already digitsed:

    ANDERSON Walter - born 15 May 1895 - Swedish - NAA: A435 1944/4/155 (26pp.)

    and:

    SANDELIN,Matti - born 10 February, 1902 - Finnish - NAA: A435 1944/4/1723 (18pp.)

    The contents and number of pages vary, according to the individual.

    Chase it up, I think you will find it worthwhile.

    Col.
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 16th January 2010 at 00:28.

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    Col
    Thanks again. I had noticed the service record mentioning the injury, but had failed - despite several searches - to find the 52 OBU ORB. Excellent info. Via Australian War Memorial I have found a photo of General Pupose Launch 'Sapphire' when coded 15-05, but I guess that this is old news for you.
    http://cas.awm.gov.au/item/134592

    And via the ORB I realised that he was posted in the Northern parts of Australia (Darwin, and returning from Cape Don) and that he did not remain in the Lake Boga area. From the service record the following postings can be noted ([] is added by me):

    17.10.43 to No. 4 Recruit Depot [Perth]
    13.11.42 to No. 2 Bombing and Air Gunnery School [Port Pirie]
    06.12.42 to HQ Rathmines
    20.01.43 to No. 1 Flying Boat Repair Depot [Lake Boga]
    29.05.43 to No. 4 Embarkation Depot [Adelaide]
    21.06.43 to No. 55 Operational Base Unit [Birdum]
    03.07.43 to No. 52 Operational Base Unit [Darwin]
    08.12.43 evacuated to No.7 RAAF Hospital [Adelaide]
    18.12.43 to No.6 RAAF Hospital [Heidelberg]
    20.03.44 to No. 1 Convalescent Depot
    05.06.44 to No. 4 Convalescent Depot (later No. 4 Medical Rehabilitation Unit)
    15.01.44 to No. 5 Personnel Depot (discharged)


    I am aware of the naturalisation record, and has now requested a digitisation of it, but status is "item not available"

    Mikkel
    Last edited by Mikkel Plannthin; 16th January 2010 at 10:12. Reason: info added
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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    Mikkel,
    "Motor Boat Crew" was the basic trade employed on all marine craft in British Commonwealth air forces of this era, with higher trades being secod class coxswain and first class coxswain. MBC undertook general all general duties aboard RAF marine craft such as mooring, steering, cooking, and assisting specialised staff with engine room duties, etc. A former MBC member might care to elaborate on this brief list, which I am certain should be very much longer then the few I am aware of! Larger craft, such as HSL, etc, were commanded by Warrant Officers or junior officers with appropriate quaifications. Engine room staff would work under qualifed engine fitters, etc. In the RNZAF it was not unknown for an airmen in the trade of Flight Mechanic or Fitter IIE (aircraft engine trades) to be in charge of the engine room of a vessel powered with aircraft-type petrol engines, such as those derived from the Napier Lion or the Merlin.
    David D

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    David
    Thank you for providing this piece of information. I have been able to provide a more comprehensive description of the relevant serviceman's history, cf.
    http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/showthread.php?t=7387

    I am not sure about his exact function, other than he was mustered as Motor Boat Crew in Group III. I found a piece of paper in his service record listing a large number of different "job categories" in Group I thorugh to Group V - some of these are among those you mention.

    But it is an area, that I have never come across before - the sailing RAAF personnel :-)

    Regards

    Mikkel Plannthin
    Britain's Victory, Denmark's Freedom. Danish Volunteers in Allied Air Forces During the Second World War
    fb.me/britainsvictorydenmarksfreedom
    danishww2pilots.dk - a resource on Danish aircrew during the Second World War

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