Supermarine Walrus L2177
This shot came from a family
album of Margaret Picard of Townsville, Queensland whose father
spent much time in Papua/New Guinea. Pursuant to that our first
thinking was that this photo was
locale. Research, however, shows this not to be the and it
turns out that the shot was
Kalafarana, Malta, in August 1938 whilst the aircraft was being
salvaged following a
sinking which occurred when the Walrus landed with the camera hatch
open. L2177 had its first
July 1937, and was crated for shipment to join 711 Catapult flight
attached to HMS Sussex
at Malta in
November of that year. It was being flown by Lt.
H.F. Stokes, RN when the accident
The three crewmen escaped safely. Following its
salvage operation the Walrus was sent
to 102 MU
at RAF Abu Sueir in Egypt for repair, and later transferred to the
RAAF, serving aboard
Leander class light cruiser HMAS Sydney in September 1940.
Possibly this photo accompanied
aircraft and somehow wound up in Margaret's collection.
Anyway, just over a year later, in Nov
Sydney was sunk, with a loss of all hands, (645 souls) in a battle with
the German auxiliary
Kormoran off the coast of WA some 130 miles SW of Carnarvon.
(The Kormoran was also
as a result of this sea battle). Evidently, L2177 went down
with the Sydney. .