Sgt Arthur Ruge (405424) aged 24, and passenger L.A.C. George Moore (15508) aged 33 and Fitter Armourer, took off in A20-506 Wirraway as part of No.9 Fighter Operational Training Course on June 23rd, 1942 destined for Lake Victoria, which is situated approximately 80 Kilometres West of 2OTU.
The Flight was to help in the plotting of the shadow shooting range for future training exercises, and whilst carrying out this exercise, the Wirraway was observed by the pilot of the ????Shadow Aircraft???? to flick stall and spin into the Lake where it sank almost immediately. The search of the Lake that had started that very day was finally abandoned on the 20th of July with no result of finding the aircraft and particularly the pilots. The aircraft and both pilots are still listed as Missing in Action (MIA).
This accident was the first fatal accident to occur at Mildura 2OTU just 39 days after the unit had moved to Mildura and set a precedent of what was yet to come.
Acknowledgement – Graham Ruge (Nephew), Biography – Mildura 2OTU Heritage Inc