Just want to show what can be done with a named MKII here in Australia.
(just showing off really )
I just got this named Australian 1941 MkII.While i was waiting for it to arrive,i took the opportunity to research the original owner.
His name was Ronald James Cavanagh,born on the 14th November 1910, in Hobart, Tasmania.
He enlisted on the 9th March 1942 in Melbourne,Victoria at the age of 32 which of course was an old man compared with the average age of enlistees at the time.
He was married to Zilda with 2 sons Paul aged 3, Peter aged 1 and a Daughter Suzanne born in 1943.
With previous service with the Royal Australian Navy Reserve as an Able Seaman from 1927 to 1932,he applied and he was accepted by the RAAF on the 7th July 1942 and posted to 1 Aircraft Depot Laverton Air Base, Victoria.
On the 26th of September 1942 he attended and completed an Fitter-Armament School Course and attained the rank of Leading Aircraftman.
For the next 2 years he served at 1 Aircraft Depot ,Laverton Airbase,Victoria.
At approximately 11.05 on the morning of the 11th December 1944 whilst on a test flight of a RAAF B-25D Mitchell (A47-24) the Chief Observer of the Anglesea Volunteer Air Observer Corps (VAOC) saw the bomber practicising out to sea on the firing range when he saw the bomber catch fire, lose height and drop into the ocean near Anglesea, Victoria.
Out of the 5 crew 3 were killed they were, SQNLDR F.R. McGrill 575 and FLTLT R.A. Wines DFC 402432 and LAC R.J. Cavanagh 51756,the survivors were LAC D.R Roberts 29934 and FLTLT A.G.Claire 273495.
The survivors were thrown clear when the aircraft hit the water,amazingly they only sustained minor injuries.
The remains of the deceased men were not recovered and there is only a plaque at the Sydney War Memorial to honour R.J.Cavanagh and the other two men.
There were plans to recover the aircraft in 2002,but i can find no evidence that it ever occured.
Ronald James Cavanagh,never served overseas during his time in the RAAF,i feel that this might have been because of his age and marital status.I think his death is even more tragic than if it had occured in battle,as i shows how far reaching the effects of War can be.
I somehow feel honoured to have a tangible link to this man,whilst not a true war Hero,a hero all the same that was working to protect the country he loved.
RIP-Lest We Forget.
Here are some scans that i have collected on him,