The Last Post Ceremony commemorating the service of (429924) Flying Officer Lavington Edmund John Frederick Chinnery, No. 466 Squadron RAF, Second World War

Place Europe: Belgium, Flanders, Antwerpen province, Antwerp
Accession Number PAFU2014/235.01
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 13 July 2014
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 Joanne Smedley, the story for this day was on (429924) Flying Officer Lavington Edmund John Frederick Chinnery, No. 466 Squadron RAF, Second World War.

Speech transcript

429924 Flying Officer Lavington Edmund John Frederick Chinnery, No. 466 Squadron RAF
KIA 13 May 1944
No photograph in collection

Story delivered 13 July 2014

Today we remember and pay tribute to Flying Officer Lavington Edmund John Frederick Chinnery.

Jack Chinnery was the youngest son of Archibald and Melinda Chinnery, born on 7 September 1911. He grew up on his father’s winery in Magill, Adelaide, and attended St Peter’s College, where he was a prefect and served with the college’s cadet corps. After school he first worked for George Wills & Company before joining his father and older brother in the family winery, A.G. Chinnery and Sons. He married Ruva Arna Young in the early 1930s and went on to have two children: John, born in 1936, and Jacey, born in 1938.

Jack enlisted in the Air Force Reserve in February 1942, and was accepted for active service with the Royal Australian Air Force in October of that year. He then underwent an extended period of training at bases around Australia, including those at Ballarat, Parafield, Victor Harbour, and Port Pirie. He was granted a commission on 21 July 1943.

Chinnery was sent to the United Kingdom under the Empire Air Training Scheme, in which countries of the British Commonwealth established a joint pool of trained aircrew to reinforce the British Royal Air Force for service in Europe. As a part of this process, Chinnery was posted to No. 466 Squadron of the RAF and commenced flying operations in Halifax bombers against German-occupied Europe.

On 12 May 1944 Flying Officer Chinnery was one of a crew of seven in Halifax LV.919. They took off at 9.51 pm to bomb railway and transport yards in the occupied Belgian town of Hasselt. They never returned.

It was later determined that the Halifax in which Chinnery was the rear gunner had been shot down about 20 miles north east of Antwerp, shortly after midnight on 13 May. The crash was attributed to Luftwaffe night-fighter pilot Heinz-Wolfgang Schnaufer. Although there were some reports of crewmembers being made prisoners of war, it was eventually determined that all seven men had been killed in the crash. Jack Chinnery and his six crewmates are now buried together in Schoonselhof Cemetery.

His name is listed on the Roll of Honour on my left, along with around 40,000 others from the Second World War. There is no photograph in the Memorial’s collection to display beside the Pool of Reflection.

This is but one of the many stories of courage and sacrifice told here at the Australian War Memorial. We now remember Flying Officer Lavington Edmund John Frederick Chinnery, and all of those Australians who have given their lives in the service of our nation.

  • Video of The Last Post Ceremony commemorating the service of (429924) Flying Officer Lavington Edmund John Frederick Chinnery, No. 466 Squadron RAF, Second World War (video)