Percival Valentine BASHFORD


BASHFORD, Percival Valentine

Service Number: 414881
Enlisted: 6 December 1941, Brisbane, Qld.
Last Rank: Flight Sergeant
Last Unit: No. 142 Squadron (RAF)
Born: Toowoomba, Qld., 14 February 1920
Home Town: Fairfield, Brisbane, Queensland
Schooling: Toowoomba Grammar School, Central Technical School
Occupation: Motor Mechanic
Died: Flying Battle, Italy, 24 February 1944, aged 24 years
Cemetery: Bari War Cemetery
XV D 34, Bari War Cemetery, Bari, Apulia, Italy
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Toowoomba Grammar School WW2 Honour Board, Toowoomba Roll of Honour WW2, Toowoomba WW2 Roll of Honour Book, Toowoomba War Memorial (Mothers' Memorial)
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World War 2 Service

3 Sep 1939: Involvement Flight Sergeant, SN 414881
6 Dec 1941: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Flight Sergeant, SN 414881, No. 142 Squadron (RAF), Brisbane, Qld.
6 Dec 1941: Enlisted Royal Australian Air Force, Flight Sergeant, SN 414881

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Biography contributed by Faithe Jones

Son of John Edward George and Martha Kitchenham Bashford.

Flight Sergeant Percival Bashford was the pilot and Captain of a No. 142 Squadron Royal Air Force Wellington bomber MK Z US that was detailed to attack the Daimler Puch aircraft works at Steyr in Austria. The aircraft took off at 6.06 p.m. on 24th February 1944 and no further news was received after take-off. The aircraft was lost whilst returning from the operation. A statement from the Rear-Gunner (Sergeant W.J. Borton) of the Royal Air Force stated that the aircraft developed engine trouble on the port motor before reaching the target and Flight Sergeant Bashford decided to return to base. The bomb load was jettisoned in the sea, and fifteen minutes before signal lights were seen, the aircraft broke cloud at 2,000 feet, and crashed a few seconds later.

BASHFORD.— A tribute of love to the memory of my precious Son, 414881 Flt. Sgt. Val Bashford, Acting Captain of a Wellington  Bomber, attached to 142 Squadron, R.A.F., who paid the supreme sacrifice at Ariana, Italy, whilst returning from an air raid over  Germany on February 24th. 1944, aged 24 years 10 days, interred at Foggia Cemetery, Italy.
He has but gone across the way
Where sunlight brighter shines, to know
the perfect day.
Alas! its easy to say so many things.
But parting with a loved one stinging
sorrow brings:
Oh, sad and aching heart of mine, take
comfort new.
In love we still are one, tho' he is
lost to view.
His loving mother.