The Last Post Ceremony commemorating the service of (424306) Flight Sergeant Keith Kevin Reynolds, No. 100 Squadron, Royal Air Force, Second World War.

Places
Accession Number AWM2018.1.1.3
Collection type Film
Object type Last Post film
Physical description 16:9
Maker Australian War Memorial
Place made Australia: Australian Capital Territory, Canberra, Campbell
Date made 3 January 2018
Access Open
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC
Copying Provisions Copy provided for personal non-commercial use
Description

The Last Post Ceremony is presented in the Commemorative area of the Australian War Memorial each day. The ceremony commemorates more than 102,000 Australians who have given their lives in war and other operations and whose names are recorded on the Roll of Honour. At each ceremony the story behind one of the names on the Roll of Honour is told. Hosted by , the story for this day was on (424306) Flight Sergeant Keith Kevin Reynolds, No. 100 Squadron, Royal Air Force, Second World War.

Speech transcript

424306 Flight Sergeant Keith Kevin Reynolds, No. 100 Squadron, Royal Air Force
KIA 3 February 1945

Story delivered 3 January 2018

Today we remember and pay tribute to Flight Sergeant Keith Kevin Reynolds.

Born in the Sydney suburb of Marrickville on 30 May 1923, Keith Kevin Reynolds was the son of Clement and Jessie Reynolds.

A student before he enlisted, Reynolds volunteered for service in the Royal Australian Air Force in Sydney on 17 August 1942, not long after his 19th birthday.

He began training as a wireless operator and soon embarked for overseas service. As part of the Empire Air Training Scheme, Reynolds was one of almost 27,500 RAAF pilots, navigators, wireless operators, gunners, and engineers who, throughout the course of the war, joined squadrons based in Britain.

After arriving in Britain on 12 March 1944, Reynolds undertook further specialist training before being posted to No. 100 Squadron, Royal Air Force, in September. As part of Bomber Command, No. 100 Squadron was equipped with the four-engine Avro Lancaster heavy bomber.

On the night of 3 February 1945, the Lancaster in which Reynolds was a wireless operator was taking part in a bombing raid on the Prosper Benzol Works at Bottrop in the Ruhr industrial area of Germany, Reynolds and five of his Australian crewmates – Flight Lieutenant Robin Ordell, Pilot Officer Ian Osborne, Flight Sergeant Raymond Kevin McKaskill, and Warrant Officer John Killen – and one British crewmate, Sergeant Charles Scurr – were all killed in action. The only member of the crew to survive was the British tailgunner, Flight Sergeant James Harper, who became a prisoner of war and spent the rest of the war in hospital recovering from his injuries.

After their bodies were recovered from the crash site, the dead crew were buried in the St Elizabeth Cemetery in the Netherlands. They were later re-interred in the British and Commonwealth War Cemetery at Mierlo.

Keith Reynolds was 21 years old.

His name is listed on the Roll of Honour on your right, among almost 40,000 Australians who died while serving in the Second World War.

This is but one of the many stories of service and sacrifice told here at the Australian War Memorial. We now remember Flight Sergeant Keith Kevin Reynolds, who gave his life for us, for our freedoms, and in the hope of a better world.

Lachlan Grant
Historian, Military History Section

  • Video of The Last Post Ceremony commemorating the service of (424306) Flight Sergeant Keith Kevin Reynolds, No. 100 Squadron, Royal Air Force, Second World War. (video)