Leonard Alfred EASTHER


EASTHER, Leonard Alfred

Service Number: 429801
Enlisted: 12 September 1942, Adelaide, South Australia
Last Rank: Sergeant
Last Unit: Royal Canadian Airforce Training Units
Born: Quorn, South Australia, 19 December 1921
Home Town: Quorn, Flinders Ranges, South Australia
Schooling: Quorn and District High School, and Adelaide University
Occupation: Auctioneers clerk
Died: Accidental (air crash), Cooking Lake, Edmonton, Canada, 29 October 1943, aged 21 years
Cemetery: Beechmount Cemetery, Edmonton, Canada
Plot: Block 206. Grave 1.
Memorials: Adelaide WW2 Wall of Remembrance, Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Quorn Cross of Sacrifice, Quorn and District Roll of Honour WW2
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World War 2 Service

12 Sep 1942: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Aircraftman 2 (WW2), SN 429801, Adelaide, South Australia
15 Jan 1943: Embarked
29 Oct 1943: Involvement Royal Australian Air Force, Sergeant, SN 429801, Royal Canadian Airforce Training Units, Empire Air Training Scheme

Help us honour Leonard Alfred Easther's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography contributed by Julianne Ryan

Born 19 December 1921 in Quorn, South Australia.

Grandfather William Wallace Bell served in the British Army in the Zulu Wars of 1879 in
South Africa. He came out to South Australia after that and made his home in Quorn,
South Australia - he died 11/11/1947.

William's sons (Leonard's Uncle):-
3686 Private Richard Mitchell BELL MM - 10th Infantry Battalion
11/08/1915  enlisted into WWI (24 years of age)
02/12/1915  embarked Outer Harbour, SA onboard RMS Malwa
                   as a Private with 10th Battalion, 12th Reinforcement
Awarded:     Military Medal
12/06/1919  returned to Australia

3134 Private Alfred James BELL - 50th Infantry Battalion
09/10/1916  enlisted into WWI  (26 years of age)
16/12/1916  embarked Outer Harbour, SA onboard HMAT A35 Berrima
                   as a Private with 50th Battalion, 8th Reinforcement
26/08/1917  died of wounds received on patrol duty - Warneton, Messines, Belgium
buried in:     Trois-Arbres Cemetery (Plot I, Row Z, Grave No. 42), Steenwerck, France
His name is commemorated on Panel 150 at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, ACT

1359 Warrant Officer Class II William Charles BELL
                   4th Broad Gauge Railway Operating Company
25/01/1917  enlisted into WWI (33 years of age)
11/05/1917  embarked Port of Melbourne, VIC onboard HMAT A9 Shropshire
                   as a 2nd Corporal with Railway Unit, Section 4
01/07/1919  returned to Australia

Leonard's father Charles John Easther and Mother Annie Elizabeth Easther (nee Bell)
lived at Quorn, South Australia.

Three of William’s grandsons were to die in WW2:
429801 RAAF Sergeant Leonard Alfred Easther (b. 19/12/1921
                         - d. 29/10/1943 on an aircraft training flight near Edmonton, in Canada
cousin: Airman Flight Lieutenant John Napier Bell - (b. 25/04/1916
           d. 18/06/1940  plane crash in Brittany, France
           buried in:   Ploudaniel Churchyard, Brittany, France.
cousin: SX1760  Corporal Alfred Napier Bell (John Bell's brother) - (b. 01/04/1918
           d. 20/01/1944 at Shaggy Ridge, northern New Guinea

cousin (brother to John and Alfred Bell):
48040 Leading Aircraftman Bruce Napier BELL - RAAF, 84th Squadron
b. 09/02/1924 North Adelaide, SA
21/04/1942 enlisted into WWII at Farina
24/07/1944 discharged from service


Leonard was described on enlisting into WWII as 20 years 8 months of age; single;
5' 7 1/4" tall; 156 lbs; brown complexion green eyes; brown hair; Church of England

12/09/1942  enlisted into WWII in Adelaide, South Australia
                   at No.5 Recruiting Centre, RAAF

12/09/1942  appointed to No.4 ITS Victor Harbour, SA

07/11/1942  appointed to 2 ED Bradfield Park

14/12/1942  appointed to 1 ED

15/01/1943  RCAF

15/01/1943  embarked Melbourne, Victoria for overseas
31/01/1943  disembarked into Canada

31/01/1943  appointed to No.3 "M" Depot, Edmonton, Canada

06/02/1943  No. 2 Wireless School, Calgary, Canada

21/08/1943  No. 2 BAGS, Messbank

04/10/1943  obtained Air Gunners Badge

11/10/1943  Sergeant (Air Gunner) with 2 Air Observers School RCAF, Edmonton, Canada

29/10/1943  died on aircraft training flight
                  3 miles north/east of Cooking Lake Airport, Canada

buried in:    Beechmount Cemetery, Canada
                  Plot: Block 206. Grave 1

21/09/1944  RAAF noted:
                   "When ANson I 6269 crashed at approx. 2358 hours on 29/10/1943 at
                    Cooking Lake, Edmonton, Alta, Canada the following airmen sustained
                    fatal injuries:  No.429801 Sgt Easther, L A and 432249 LAC Oakes LW."               

Medals:       War medal; Defence medal

His name is commemorated on:-
- Panel 133 at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, ACT
- on his grandfather's grave in 1947, Quorn Cemetery, SA.

Submitted by Julianne T Ryan.  26/04/2017.  Lest we forget.