Flight Sergeant John Joseph Walsh (422770) served in the Royal Australian Air Force during World War Two. He flew with No. 7 Operational Training Unit, Royal Air Force at the time of his death aged only 20 years old.
The young ANZAC Flight Sergeant was the son of John Joseph Walsh and Mary Madeline Walsh of Enfield, New South Wales, Australia.
On 5th November 1943, Vickers Wellington LB247 took off from RAF Limavady, Co. Londonderry on a non-operational day time training exercise. A Royal Air Force instructor demonstrated to a crew of pupils how to carry out torpedo attacks on ships in Lough Foyle.
At around 1600hrs, Vickers Wellington LB247 crashed 1 mile east of Limavady. Flight Sergeant Walsh was the only fatality. All other crew members escaped with injuries.
The crew of Wellington LB247
|Last Name||First Name(s)||Rank||Role||Information|
|McFadden||W||Flying Officer||Instructor||Royal Australian Air Force 404360. Survived.|
|Dickson||WTK||Flying Officer||Pilot||Royal Canadian Air Force. Survived.|
|Jennie||OH||Pilot Officer||2nd Pilot||Royal Canadian Air Force. Survived.|
|McInnes||LF||Flying Officer||Navigator||Royal Australian Air Force 414296. Survived.|
|Williams||H||Flight Sergeant||Wireless Air Gunner||Royal Australian Air Force. Survived.|
|Smythe||E||Flight Sergeant||Wireless Air Gunner||Royal Australian Air Force. Survived.|
|Walsh||JJ||Flight Sergeant||Wireless Air Gunner||Royal Australian Air Force 422770. Killed.|
An inquiry found the instructor inexperienced and blamed “adverse frontal conditions”. These conditions limited the visibility of high ground as the pilot circled the area. The pilot under tutelage was not held responsible in any way.
John Joseph Walsh’s grave is in Grave 5 of St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Cemetery, Limavady, Co. Londonderry. His headstone bears the inscription:
His name is on Panel 132 of the Commemorative Area of the Australian War Memorial, Treloar Crescent, Canberra, Australia.