Spitfire Association Logo

No 12 Squadron RAAF

Formed at Laverton in Victoria on 6 February 1939, the 12 squadron moved to Darwin in July. The unit was equipped with Avro Anson and Wirraway aircraft and flew routine patrols and convoy escorts. On 1 June 1940 Anson crew and personnel were posted out to form the Darwin-based 13 Squadron.

In 1941 12 Squadron extended the range of its anti-submarine patrols and commenced training exercises with navy and army units in the area. Early the following year the squadron relocated to Batchelor airfield (located further inland) but left a detachment at Darwin. Two Wirraways from the detachment were destroyed in the attack on the city on 19 February. From 12 September the unit was renamed 12 (Dive-bomber) Squadron after being re-equipped with Vultee Vengeance aircraft. The first raids with these new aircraft took place on in June 1943 on the Tanimbar and Selaru Islands.

In July 1943 the squadron moved to Merauke airfield in Dutch New Guinea and undertook anti-submarine patrols, convoy escorts, and missions in concert with the Australian Army. The unit returned to Australia 12 months later and became non-operational. Re-equipped with ten Liberator aircraft, the squadron was reactivated on 3 February 1945. Joining forces with other RAAF squadrons, the unit bombed Japanese positions and shipping in the seas around Timor and Banda.

The unit assumed a transport role after the Second World War, dropping supplies to prisoner-of-war camps and moving personnel throughout the area. In mid-1947 12 Squadron converted to Lincoln bombers. It was officially disbanded on 22 February 1948.

Squadron Motto is "We Roam and We Charge"

Squadron Code - NH, M

Battle Honours - Nil

Casualties - 27 died

For more information please see the Roll of Honour and Second World War Nominal Roll (external website) databases.

Liberator Bomber similar to that which crashed while in service with 12 SQN. Crew; FLTLT F.L. Sismey 402764 (Pilot), FLGOFF W.S. Bell, WOFF T.N. Rust, WOFF B.L. Cox, FSGT L. Duncanson, FSGT L.M. Bailey, FSGT I.N.L. Eadton, FSGT T.W. Allan, FSGT D.D. Benson, FSGT J.A. Hollis, FSGT J.R.W. Herps. [ADF Serials]

We do our very best to make sure the information in the stories we share is correct. These stories are maintained to show our respect for the pilots, ground crew, design engineers and all who were involved with the Spitfire. In many cases, the information has been collected from the personal interactions between our members and the pilots and crew featured, and on many occasions, this process happened much later in the veterans' lives. If you believe anything on our site is not historically accurate, we welcome the additional stories, records and photos needed to help us correct the record. We thank you for your understanding.